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Isn't it illegal to ask questions about your children / marital status job applicationss?

(13 Posts)
threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 12:53:48

Just came across an application form for an agency (temping jobs) which asks:

- marital status
- number of dependants
- no of children
- ages
- do you have childminding facilities available if required?

I thought they weren't allowed to ask this, are they?

What business is it of theirs if I'm married or how old my children are when assessing my suitability for a temp job?!

threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 12:54:53

hee hee what a badly written title blush

I won't get a job like that will I? grin

mousymouse Tue 14-Jun-11 12:57:37

I think (but might be wrong) that they are not allowed to ask about pregnancy/family planning.
sounds a bit fishy anyway. do they ask the same to male candidates? keep the application form anyway.

threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 13:01:17

It's their standard form, online here www.abbeystaff.co.uk/app_form.pdf

threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 13:03:41

It does seem odd doesn't it? It makes me think they'd be the kind of backward organisation which does everything the same way they have done for the last decade, because that's the way they do things. I used to work in a place like that, it was a nightmare!

mousymouse Tue 14-Jun-11 13:08:46

I think I wouldn't answer this question as it shouldn't be of their concern how you organise your private life.

threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 14:34:02

Exactly. They ask about availability elsewhere, that should be enough.
Very backward!

I haven't filled any of it in yet. It's really put me off. I'll come back to them only if I get desperate!

StillSquiffy Tue 14-Jun-11 14:40:24

They are allowed to ask so long as they are asking this of all applicants, and not just the female applicants. I imagine they do so because some people probably apply for temp jobs before lining up childcare, which would create a nightmare for most temping agencies because so many jobs are of the type where you are phoned on Friday and told to start on Monday.

darleneoconnor Tue 14-Jun-11 14:51:39

No they are not allowed to ask it of anyone because it disproportionatly discriminates against women.

StillSquiffy Tue 14-Jun-11 16:16:13

Wrong. They are allowed to ask it if they ask it of everyone. They are NOT allowed to use it to favour one candidate over the other, and they are NOT allowed to only ask female candidates. It is of course a very silly question for a potential employer to ever bother asking because it suggests that the answer may lead to discrimination, but it is not illegal to ask it. If you disagree please show me the statute, as this is news to me

flowery Tue 14-Jun-11 16:56:52

What squiffy said - contrary to popular belief there is no list of questions or subjects that employers are banned from asking.

However it is poor practice, unnecessary and leaves them vulnerable to a discrimination claim as someone will think it has made a difference to their application.

All they need to do is point out that people need to be available at the drop of a hat and ask candidates to confirm that they are.

threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 22:42:04

Either way round it's not exactly great practice is it? Why on earth do they need to know if I'm married, and how old my kids are?!

threefeethighandrising Tue 14-Jun-11 22:44:08

Loving the use of the term "Christian name" at the beginning too hmm

I'm not going to touch these guys with a barge pole, they're living in the past.

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