Andreea Constantin, Myra Hamilton, Marian Baird
Much of the research on the impacts of the pandemic on work-life reconciliation has focused on parents of young children. People with care responsibilities for other family members, such as ageing relatives, relatives with a disability or chronic illness, or grandchildren, have been much less studied during the pandemic. Carers of these groups are more likely to be aged 45 and above. This report aims to fill this gap in research by exploring the circumstances of mature Australians (aged 45 and above) who had care responsibilities during the first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In order to understand the experiences of mature-aged carers (including carers of an ageing relative, carers of a person with a disability or chronic illness, grandparents, and parental carers, described collectively in this report as ‘carers’), the research team surveyed a panel of Australians aged 45 and above between June 2020 and October 2021 about the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on various aspects of their work, family lives and wellbeing. Data was collected at four separate time points: June 2020, November 2020, April 2021 and October 2021. This analysis offers insights into how mature Australians reconciled their family and care responsibilities with paid work in the context of the pandemic across the four time points.