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Being forced out in mat leave

(5 Posts)
notthegruffalo Mon 24-Feb-14 20:23:57

I work part time for a small charity. Since I went on mat leave last may, everyone I know has left and the director has employed a new manager who is currently living with him. Half of my role has been covered by a temp, the other half by one of my former colleagues who has just left. I have had no contact with the director (wouldn't reply to my emails) but the chair of the board met me to ask me how I would feel about my role changing so that one half of it is basically lost and the other half is at a level higher than my qualifications.

I said it sounded like they were changing my role into one I'm not qualified for and suggested a settlement agreement on return for me waiving my right to return to work. I also expressed surprise that my boss (the director) wouldn't meet up.

The chair said he'd arrange a meeting and think about what I said. That was 3 weeks ago. I haven't heard anything and have non idea what to do next. Mostly, I want to know where I stand so I can start looking for work. I don't want to go back and don't think Id be welcome. Should I just tell them I'll resign and let them off he hook?

Background so as not to drip feed - boss was fine with me til I got pregnant, then belittled me and hated all my ideas and humiliated me in front of colleagues. I eventually went on sick leave followed by early mat leave because of the stress. Before I got pregnant he told me he'd fire me if I ever did. I have seen him do some seriously unethical things which I challenged but was always told it had nothing to do with me. Other women have complained to the board before about his behavior (sexism) but nothing has ever been done.

Lottiedoubtie Mon 24-Feb-14 20:33:59

Don't resign.

Start looking for jobs.

Keep pushing the trustees for a settlement agreement (money and exemplary reference).

Don't engage with the director at all.

sad for you. I'd think you were working for the charity I once had the misfortune of being employed by (similar approach to staffing! Sexist and occasionally agressive director), but the charity I worked for has gone under....

notthegruffalo Mon 24-Feb-14 21:05:13

Thank you for the reply - I guess it's the reference I'm worried about. But then if I get another job before I hear anything back, then they would have no reason not to give me a good reference? Also, there's the injustice of it ... But I guess there's nothing I can do about that.

flowery Tue 25-Feb-14 12:54:52

When are you due back?

One option would be to write to the chair, saying that as you have heard nothing further you will be returning as planned on x date to your original role. Say you understand you are entitled to your original role, or, if that's not reasonably practicable, a suitable alternative on no less favourable terms and conditions.

That might prompt some action, and if they don't want you back, perhaps a settlement offer.

You were asked how you would feel about your role changing, not told "this is what's happening", and I think your other concerns about your direct boss may be prompting you to make some assumptions about them planning to get rid of you or something, is that fair? That's not to play down how your boss has been behaving, of course.

You don't need anything further from them to be able to start looking for work if you want to move on anyway, so I would definitely do that.

notthegruffalo Tue 25-Feb-14 19:38:38

The problem is I don't want to go back. I have heard from former colleagues that my boss has been bad mouthing me, and it's not a nice place to work. The thought of going back (in May) fills me with dread. So I feel like I should just resign, and tbh I would have if my boss had replied to any if my emails or agreed to meet. But now I feel aggrieved - I know my boss has been bad mouthing me, and I know they want me to leave. I think I want justice and fairness, which I will probably never get. Or at least the chance to defend myself. But i can only lose - all the power lies with them. So I should probably just walk.

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