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To be furious with my DHs workplace?

(59 Posts)
FuriousWifeNeedsCalming Sun 02-Oct-16 12:31:19

I earn more than DH in the 3 days a week I do, than he does in 5 days. He can't even equal it by doing 6 days so we stick to 5 for him. Which means I'm the breadwinner and also DDs primary carer, which I know upsets DH a lot, his wages cover the 3 days a week DD is in Nursery. DD is 15m.

DH works for a major supermarket retailer, he's technically a supervisor but doesn't get paid much more (5p extra per hour) for the extra responsibilites, and often ends up only "supervising" to cover the department managers breaks or when they're off on AL.

He apparently loves his job though. But i hate it. In the two years he's worked for them they cancelled a weeks AL the day before it started as they were apparently short staffed, they made him take only 10 days PL when he's entitled to 4 weeks because the manager of his department flew off to the Caribbean, and there was apparently no-one else to cover him and they've also asked him to work the week between Christmas and New Year, despite him specifically asking in September for it off because DDs Nursery is closed so I need him to look after her for those 3 days - I could book it off but he feels he doesn't get enough time with her as it is, and this seemed the perfect opportunity for him to spend some time with her. I am happy for him to work his contract 10 hours and a few extras on the days I'm not working (he told his work this) but apparently he's needed.

He's contracted for 10 hours a week, but usually works between 35 and 40 hours a week, but often tell him he can only do hos contract 10 hours then call him and expect him to drop everything to go to work with less than an hours notice. He doesn't get paid if he's not working so although my wages cover everything bar childcare we do have a small amount of debt because of his hours being dropped randomly. We're only talking £100 or so, which gets cleared when his hours go up, but we get into debt again when they drop his hours.

Today I am at the final straw with his workplace. I am ill, I have a double ear infection in my right ear, and a inner ear and a sinus infection in my left ear and sinus. I am unable to look after DD on my own as I can't hear anything out of my right ear and have limited hearing in my left, I'm dizzy when I stand up and can't keep food down due to the Antibiotics I'm on.

DH has never ever been off sick, he always turns up for work on time with his uniform ironed (he does it every morning), and he's happy to cover his colleagues shifts if necessary even on other departments. He has never turned down a shift and regularly works Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights which are the busiest times for the shops and when no-one else will work.

He's doing a 9 hour shift tomorrow, and DD isn't due in Nursery until Tuesday, she is also ill with a cold/cough. So DH went in to ask for tomorrow off (work is a 10minute walk away).

Apparently they can't let him have the time off unless he has a doctors note for himself, they will not accept my one for my workplace, and even though his contract days are Tuesday and Wednesday they've told him he needs to be in tomorrow as usual at 6am. They've said as a good will gesture they'll let him leave an hour early if all his work is done. I'm sick of it, if he doesn't turn up that's gross misconduct and he could lose his job, which we don't want as although my wages cover the bills, DH likes to be in work and DD loves Nursery and has developed so much from being there.

DH is looking for another job, halfheartedly as he loves his workplace for some reason, and he can't drive which limits him to anything on a public transport route.

AIBU to think they are bastards unreasonable and need to treat their staff with more respect? and AIBU to be furious that I'm going to managing an active toddler for a minimum 9 hours tomorrow with no hearing and almost constant pain?

eurochick Sun 02-Oct-16 12:34:12

Isn't he entitled to emergency parental leave due to no childcare?

19lottie82 Sun 02-Oct-16 12:34:48

YANBU...... BUT it also sounds like your OH is a bit of a push over, i.e. They say jump and he says how high!

Re the cancelling the weeks AL thing at a days notice, they legally can't do that. He should have told them to do one. But TBH it sounds like he didn't want to.

19lottie82 Sun 02-Oct-16 12:35:28

And yes, he is legally entitled to unpaid leave to look after his sick child.

RealityCheque Sun 02-Oct-16 12:36:32

Sorry but he is being a doormat.

Time he stands up to these twats. They are behaving the way they do because he allows them to.

Time he grows some bollocks, but to be honest he's probably too late now having allowed them to take this piss for so long. Time to get a new job and start as he means to go on.

Imnotaslimjim Sun 02-Oct-16 12:48:14

My DH was exactly the same as yours but with the added bonus of being salaried so overtime wasn't paid! He came home with the same pay every month no matter the hours he did.

Your DH needs to start standing up for himself. The cancelling his AL was illegal so if they try that again, he has to tell them "not my problem"

I understand you're cross at the employer as they're probably making him feel that he has no choice but he does and he has to change things himself or they'll just keep using him.

VoldysGoneMouldy Sun 02-Oct-16 12:52:06

Don't be furious with them, be angry with him. They're taking the piss because he's letting them.

CreepyPasta Sun 02-Oct-16 12:56:05

Even if he doesn't turn up for his shift tomorrow that doesn't fall under gross misconduct.

You are entitled to unpaid leave to care for a dependant under 5. If it was a regular occurrence then they would be in their rights to investigate and possibly take it to disciplinary stage. But if it's a one off and he hasn't even had time off himself with sickness in the past then they wouldn't have a leg to stand on.

As PP's have already said, it does sound like he's a bit of a pushover. They are taking advantage and trying to scare him.

KathArtic Sun 02-Oct-16 13:00:48

Unfortunately, looking after your child is not his employers responsibility, but he needs to start putting his foot down and working to his contract.

He can also self certificate for 7 days before needing a GP note.

He needs to read up on his rights - look at ACAS.

ThisIsStartingToBoreMe Sun 02-Oct-16 13:01:10

They are legally entitled to give him emergency childcare leave

IAmNotAMindReader Sun 02-Oct-16 13:05:02

He needs to learn his employment rights and enforce them. Sounds like many times his employers have acted illegally and thats just in this area. Who knows how much other employment legislation they flout.
They are nit a good employer. Hopefully once your DH sees how easy it is for them to break the law they wont seem so great after all

PonderingLikeAPond Sun 02-Oct-16 13:07:04

He is contracted 10 hours per week.

He chooses to agree to the additional hours.

He chooses to work the days he isnt contracted to.

MammouthTask Sun 02-Oct-16 13:12:15

He needs to either stop being walked over or find a job with another retailer.
Is he part of a Unions and could get some advice from them too?

Because yes they are taking the kick but he is also accepting it all wo a word. It must be great for them to have him on board hmm

gillybeanz Sun 02-Oct-16 13:19:29

it sounds like your dh problem tbh.
He needs to read his contract and become familiar with the law surrounding his job. It sounds like he is happy jumping when they say jump.
Could it be that he wants to feel more responsible than he is because of this

I earn more than DH in the 3 days a week I do, than he does in 5 days. He can't even equal it by doing 6 days so we stick to 5 for him. Which means I'm the breadwinner and also DDs primary carer, which I know upsets DH a lot, his wages cover the 3 days a week DD is in Nursery. DD is 15m.

You may not mean to but to me you come across as thinking you are superior, maybe he lacks confidence.

JennyOnAPlate Sun 02-Oct-16 13:20:23

They can't sack him for gross misconduct for failing to work a shift he isn't contracted for. It sounds like your Dh needs to learn to put his foot down.

AlbertaDewdrop Sun 02-Oct-16 13:22:01

They are legally entitled to give him emergency childcare leave

That isn't true. He can have reasonable time to arrange childcare- not to do the childcare. As he knows today then that is reasonable time to arrange for tomorrow.

IAmNotAMindReader Sun 02-Oct-16 13:22:16

As has been said for other situations. You don't have an employer problem, you have a DH problem.
They are only getting away with this because he is allowing it and is happy to go along with whatever they tell him without checking it. He is allowing the situation to continue by not putting much effort into finding another position. He is allowing your family to suffer rather than sort the situation with his employers (stand up to them or leave).

AlbertaDewdrop Sun 02-Oct-16 13:23:50


If your child falls ill you could take time off to go to the doctor and make care arrangements. Your employer may then ask you to take annual leave or parental leave if you want to look after your child for longer.

AlbertaDewdrop Sun 02-Oct-16 13:25:47

Parental leave is unpaid. You’re entitled to 18 weeks’ leave for each child and adopted child, up to their 18th birthday.

The limit on how much parental leave each parent can take in a year is 4 weeks for each child (unless the employer agrees otherwise).

You must take parental leave as whole weeks (eg 1 week or 2 weeks) rather than individual days, unless your employer agrees otherwise or if your child is disabled. You don’t have to take all the leave at once.

A ‘week’ equals the length of time an employee normally works over 7 days.


If an employee works 3 days a week, one ‘week’ of parental leave equals 3 days. If an employee works irregular weeks the number of days in a ‘week’ is the total number of days they work a year divided by 52.

GardenGeek Sun 02-Oct-16 13:31:34

Tell him to go work for Waitrose.
As far as I hear they are excellent.

If he is being treated like this I would really encourage him to go elsewhere.

CrazyNameCrazyGuy Sun 02-Oct-16 13:35:49

I'm guessing he's worried about refusing because he thinks they might give him less hours in future (maybe out of spite?).

He's already feeling bad about the fact he earns less even with 25+ hours over and above his contract. He knows that your family would struggle if he only worked, for example 10-20 hours a week. I can see why it would appear he's being a 'doormat' but maybe that's being too harsh on him. I think he just wants to be able to keep contributing as much as he can to the household finances.

Having said that, he should be able to get unpaid emergency leave (or, failing that, 'feel sick' after being in work for a couple of hours - he must have caught something off his sick child ...)

ilovesooty Sun 02-Oct-16 13:38:34

My thoughts were the same as gilly

I'm wondering if he is prepared to put up with this stuff at work because being needed and doing the shifts others won't do is a source of self esteem for him

liletsthepink Sun 02-Oct-16 13:41:17

I'm annoyed for you as your DH is being so weak about this. He has to TELL them that he is unable to work tomorrow rather than ask them. His wife and child are ill so he has caring responsibilities. They can't sack him for being unable to work and if they did he would have a good case for an employment tribunal. No major retailer wants that type of publicity!

ItShouldOfBeenJess Sun 02-Oct-16 13:44:24

He apparently loves his job though. But I hate it

DH is looking for another job, halfheartedly as he loves his work place for some reason

Don't his feelings come into it at all? Perhaps his enjoyment of his role makes up for his insecurities about not being the main breadwinner. To demand he leaves for somewhere he may be less happy seems a bit heavy-handed. You may be earning more, but he is doing more hours.

WineIsMyMainVice Sun 02-Oct-16 13:50:54

If he didn't turn up for a non contractual shift that most definitely is not gross misconduct.
It is ill informed to say that you are entitled to time off to look after an ill child. That is not entirely true. The law says that you are entitled to time off in an emergency for a dependent. This would include the usual form of childcare not being available (in this case, you!) But the government guidelines say that this time should be spent trying to put alternative arrangements in place. So if your DH s workplace knows that you knew today that you would not have child care tomorrow they would be within their rights to ask you what alternative arrangements you tried to make. It might be that you don't have anyone else to help out. In which case he could reasonably expect to have the time off.
Good luck.

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