Carers suffer more than 6,000 violent attacks, union reveals


Care workers suffered more than 6,000 violent attacks over the last five years, figures released by the GMB Union reveal.

The statistics, which were obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, revealed there were 6,034 violent attacks on care workers resulting in serious injury between 2013/14 and 2017/18. More than 5,000 of the carers were so seriously injured they had to take at least seven days off work.

A further 1,026 carers suffered a ‘specified’ injury – which can include fractures, loss of sight, brain damage, loss of consciousness, asphyxia, or amputation.

Violent attacks account for a third of reports for residential care workers – compared to just 7% of reports for all workers.

Rachel Harrison, GMB National Officer, said: “Our members often tell us about the abuse they have to face at work – and these figures back them up.

“These statistics are the tip of the iceberg – they only include the most serious injuries, and our members have to deal with violence on a daily basis.

“But care work is much more than a job – our members love their work and want to carry on doing their best for those they look after.

“Unfortunately, our members are sometimes put under unacceptable pressure to keep working after an attack when they should be receiving care themselves.

“Care is crucial. For each of us individually, our parents, grandparents, kids, friends and neighbours, but too often the sector is overlooked and the people working in care treated less than the frontline professionals that they are.”


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