Ask the Care Specialists

Welcome to our 'Ask the Care Specialists', your one-stop portal for social care-related questions. Our team of specialists will try to answer as many of your Social Care questions as possible.

A member of staff is uncomfortable providing care to service users of a gender other than their own, what should I do?

A member of staff is uncomfortable providing care to service users of a gender other than their own, what should I do?

Thank you for your question. Firstly, I would advise that this is picked up with each member of staff on a case-by-case basis. Discuss why the staff member is highlighting this, as there could be genuine reasons, such as inappropriate comments, touching etc, as to why they feel uncomfortable providing care with people of another gender. Where the reason is justifiable, refer to your HR and care policies and processes to support the staff member and try and resolve the issues that are causing them to feel uncomfortable.

 In my view a separate staff policy on this, would do more harm than good. Providing care is very much service user led, and if a service user does not have an issue with someone of the opposite gender providing care, then a policy could provide the opportunity for less scrupulous staff to use this as an excuse not to carry out their role properly.  In all instances the manager should deal with this in a reasonable manner and listen to the member of staff’s concerns.

Emily Kerrigan

Domiciliary Care Policy Lead

Emily has a background in quality and compliance with specific expertise in audit. Her previous roles have included working with domiciliary care branches that required improvement and supporting them to action plan and improve their quality and compliance. Working at one of the largest UK domiciliary care providers ensured Emily was exposed to significant numbers of CQC, CIW and Care Inspectorate Scotland inspections. She led internal audits bench marking against regulatory standards , supporting managers in the drive to deliver high quality care and support. Emily has a proven track record in supporting the transformation of branches that require improvement, moving them to compliant and on the journey to outstanding. Read more


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Have you got a social care question that you just can't find the answer to? Our team of sector specialists is here to provide you with easy-to-understand top tips on a wide range of topics, from dementia, mental health to employment law or every day operational queries to help you deliver outstanding care.

We try to answer as many of your questions as possible. We give priority to frequently asked questions and questions regarding current events and trends. To learn more about the team visit: https://www.qcs.co.uk/team/

Please note that our specialists cannot offer answers to matters requiring legal advice. Please do have a look at our website https://www.qcs.co.uk at other answers provided by our experts and in our Expert Insights section https://www.qcs.co.uk/blog. There is a wealth of information here freely accessible that could help you.

Important note: We are not in any way affiliated or connected to the Care Quality Commission, Care Inspectorate Scotland, or Care Inspectorate Wales. If your query relates to someone who is at risk of harm or in danger, you must follow your local safeguarding procedures. It is important that you speak to your regulator who will provide you with the best guidance and support.







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