Had a return to work interview that didn't go very well. In general terms, I have been allocated a new job (despite my old job still being open), refused any change of hours (even by 30 mins) so that i can't do the nursery drop off and pick up and told that I must use holiday if my baby is sick from nursery. Obviously, I know some of these statements are against the law technically but my workplace has never been one to adhere to employment law. As it is all verbal, what's the best thing to do?The meeting was with the head honcho and HR Manager so they must know they are stepping outside some boundaries. I've emailed my grievance but think they'll give me a HR acceptable reply with the implication being I have been told what I need to do and they'll make it damned hard if I don't follow the cultural expectations. I'm such a loyal and hard working employee, I'm gutted that they're being so unsupportive to such easy going requests (I'm going back full time). I wish I wasn't so upset but it feels like a slap in the face. What's my best course of action? Help!
Well I have my work contract already. I can ask that it goes in writing but they don't really operate that way, they make it very apparent verbally what is expected and then make emails all airy. Hence, I feel forced out but would have a hard time proving it I guess. Feeling completely helpless actually for the first time in my career and really angry that having a baby has pushed me from star employee to second class citizen. And it's 2013.
How long were you off on mat leave? If it was more than 6 months, then you are entitled to a job on no less favourable terms but not necessarily the same job. Do you have any idea why they are changing your job? In terms of varying your hours, did you make a formal flexible working request? If not, I would do so, then you have their reason for turning it down in writing. If your DC is ill, then they can request that you either use holiday or take it unpaid afaik.
They are not allowed to require you to take holiday if your child is sick, you are entitled to a reasonable amount of unpaid leave in emergencies like this, which would normally be one or two days for an incidence of sickness.
Did you raise the issue of time off for baby being sick or did they? Seems a bit odd for them to just announce that if you do take time off it will be deducted from your holiday.
God, so sorry for lack of response. Thank you for the further comments. It was a really odd meeting with lots of comments thrown about in no particular order. They mentioned time off if my son is sick when they questioned my childcare arrangements (they weren't big fans if nurseries!). It was all really strange. Have put in a formal flexible working request (for all it's worth) and get the result next week. But I'm at the point now where they are suggesting I'm being inflexible and difficult so I'm feeling a bit stuck. Ellypoo, I was off for 11 months. They say they are moving me to the new role because they don't want to disrupt my original team again by moving me back into that role. Is this a good enough reason? This isn't the real reason obviously but the one they're sticking to. Will update next week - thank you all so much for your help. Am guessing I am at a bit of a dead end now as don't want to be labelled as difficult. Humph.