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Can i get the sack because my childcare is so bloody unreliable?

(10 Posts)
FireFaerie Mon 03-Sep-07 12:50:37

Have just had to phone in to work for the 5th time in the summer hols because i have no one to look after my 6 year old son.
I'm worried i may have to do the same on Wednesday, as his childcare club finished on Friday but he doesn't go back to school until Thursday?
I work in a supermarket. Can i get the sack for this?
(To be honest, i wouldnt blame them if they did sack me, but i cant afford to get fired)

RibenaBerry Mon 03-Sep-07 13:19:37

Most employers are fairly sympathetic about this kind of thing. However, yes, in theory you can be dismissed for inadequate attendance (or whatever) if you have to phone in a lot in connection with childcare. They have to be careful that it's not discrimination, so they have to treat you at least as well as other people who call in and, in reality , a bit better.

Try not to worry though. IME supermarkets are one of the employers most used to these types of things (assuming you are shop floor, not head office). They can't afford to be mean to the working mums or they would have no staff left!

flowerybeanbag Mon 03-Sep-07 13:26:23

Well, yes you can, but you probably won't.
When you phone in, are you taking it as holiday or unpaid leave or something?

They are more likely to 'address' the issue i.e. have a strong word with you about sorting out your childcare probs etc. It would have to get ridiculously bad before it got as far as risking your job I reckon.

mumtodd Mon 03-Sep-07 13:27:31

Do you know what the disciplinary policy at your job is? Most companies have to give verbal and written warnings about a problem before they can consider dismissal. Have you received any offical warnings about absence in the past?

FireFaerie Mon 03-Sep-07 13:29:27

Thank you RB
Im trying not to become too stressed.. I just feel so horrid being the one doing the letting down as a result of someone else letting me down. It feels rotten.
Guess i can kiss any promotion goodbye then grin
Just had a phone call from my supervisor. She didnt sound happy, im the only working mum at our store with a child too young to stay home alone, so i dont have much to go on, Thank you for commenting and calming me down a bit

ruddynorah Mon 03-Sep-07 13:33:30

what have you organised for the gap between friday and thursday?

FireFaerie Mon 03-Sep-07 13:33:40

Oops, thank you as well, flowery and mumtodd, your posts wernt there when i started typing.
I havnt had anything written, and nothing 'official' verbally, as far as im aware, so hopefully il be okay for the short term. I'l just have to be a little more organised when it comes to half term. Im thinking a Proper Professional Childcare instead of shoddy club i used this time around.

FireFaerie Mon 03-Sep-07 13:35:18

Ruddy, a friend was supposed to be helping me out in the gap. She is who let me down today. Tomorrow is supposed to be my day off, so its just Wednesday i have to worry about now.
Im trying to find a backup babysitter, as i now know my friend is less than reliable.

clarinsgirl Mon 03-Sep-07 13:36:11

You can't be discriminated against because you have children, but you will be expected to adhere to your company's absence policy. I would imagine that you could be disciplined and ultimately sacked if you break absence rules.

Regardless of company policy though, it must to a nightmare for you, your DS and the company. Can you look at alternative childcare options? Is there a DP/DH who could help?

flowerybeanbag Mon 03-Sep-07 13:42:16

You should be ok, at least for the time being.
Do try and sort it out though so you have a back up. Most decent employers will try and cut people a break who are having childcare problems, but it can understandably lead to resentment from other employees who are only absent when they are sick, and frustration for managers, and can be one of the reasons why employers are reluctant to agree to flexible working requests etc

You are obviously trying to sort it though, v frustrating for you as you say, having to let people down because you have been let down.

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