The deciding factor in Susan Palijan’s career decisions has been how her jobs would impact her ability to care for her parents.

She has juggled her academic and career goals with family caregiving duties for more than 20 years.

Now, she cares for her father, who was diagnosed with dementia in 2021. Palijan and her sister lived with him for several years; he struggled with depression after his wife died and they wanted to support him emotionally. He is now at a retirement home until a long-term care space becomes available.

Many caregivers have similar stories. A new report from the Canadian Centre for Caregiving Excellence says many caregivers spend more than 30 hours each week in unpaid caregiving duties — in addition to full-time jobs.