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Changes to role just before mat leave-advice please!

(3 Posts)
Mack88 Fri 19-Jul-19 10:18:34

Hi Everyone,

This is my first post so please excuse it if it comes across as a massive moan-i'm just after a bit of advice really and to see if people think I'm right in thinking that there's an issue with what’s currently happening at work.

Short version:
Work are making some changes to where my role is based just before I go on mat leave. Several of us do the same job in my team and I am the only one who has been moved-the reason I have been given is this is because i am not going to be there for a year-I feel this is blatant pregnancy discrimination.

Long version
I work for a large children’s charity (oh the irony!) in a role that involves project management looking after a specific geographical region-currently a number of London boroughs and one SE county (where I live and commutable to the London office base). The role involves a lot of being out and about in our areas, visiting projects, relationship building etc

There is a team of us doing the same job just looking after different areas. We were recently told that due to an internal restructure one of us would be moved to join a newly formed South East Team-looking after counties in the region and I have now been informed I am the team member who has been moved. The only reason I have been given for me being the person picked to move is because no one else wanted the change and I’m going off for a year-I feel this is absolutely a case of me being discriminated against because I have decided to have a baby.

None of my colleagues have children so they do not have the same considerations in terms of extra travel, needing to get home easily etc although I know whoever had the job change would be unhappy. I had a number of conversations with our department head about the changes and laid out very clearly my reasons for needing to stay London based for example-needing to be able to get home quickly if anything happens when my child is at nursery, the fact I have no family close by for emergency childcare, not being able to have the flexibility around early starts, late nights because of childcare, not being able to drive etc. The others had 1 meeting each and just said they didn’t want to move and that has been accommodated whereas my concerns have been completely ignored. TO add to insult I was not informed my role had been changed-I just saw on the job advert for my maternity cover that the role would be SE based with the option of working from a number of different offices (none of which are commutable from my home). The director of my department told my direct line manager I was aware this was happening and had agreed to the change-this is absolutely not true, I have never agreed to the change. I’ve been told I can still have my main office base in London but the nature of my role means I am out and about all the time so the extra travel will still be extensive.

I feel like I’ve been completely pushed out and they are just hoping this means that I won’t come back after my maternity leave. I made the mistake of discussing with my line manager that I would be looking into options for returning part time thinking I was being helpful in terms of team planning but I think I’ve just completely shot myself in the foot. I am the person in the team who has been doing my role the longest and have the most London-heavy workload so there is not a single logical reason for me being the person to be moved-the only thing is I am pregnant. I love my job and can’t believe this has happened at what is already such a stressful time-I’ve had a really difficult pregnancy and been dragging myself in even when I was being sick 10 times a day-wish I hadn’t bothered now!

Has anyone experienced anything similar? Am I being overly sensitive/precious thinking I should get my way when others don’t because I’ll have a baby? I really don’t know whether to put in an official complaint to HR as I think this is a significant change to my role or if this will cause even more extra stress and bad feeling in my last few weeks. Any advice is much appreciated! X

OP’s posts: |
Littlegoth Fri 19-Jul-19 10:42:14

They’ve told you that you have been moved rather than someone else because you will be off for a year on maternity leave.

If you haven’t already done so I recommend you get that reason in writing.

pooopypants Fri 19-Jul-19 10:58:22

^ this. A million times.

And speak to your union, or ACAS.

The reason given for the change is your mat leave. That's blatant sexism and singling you out due to your mat leave.

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