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Time off for abortion and the Bradford Factor

(13 Posts)
catgirl1976 Fri 20-May-16 17:44:10

Hi

My work have recently introduced the Bradford Factor with trigger points for disciplinary action

Last year I had a termination which, although the right choice, was incredibly hard and left me emotionally in a mess. I a day off to go to the initial consultation (where I was told it was too early and to come back in three weeks which was horrendous) and then a week after the actual procedure, more for emotional reasons than pyhsical.

I told my manager why I was off and they were supportive and said to take whatever time I needed

Now they have classed this time off as sickness (I would say it was more compassionate leave but hey ho) AND they have included it in calculating my Bradford Factor Score

This has tipped me into the first trigger

Can anyone advise if time off for an abortion counts as pregancy related sickness as I am aware this should not be used in things like the Bradford Factor and disciplinaries etc

Any aadvice would be much appreciated as I want to raise it but am not 100% sure where I stand.

DragonMamma Fri 20-May-16 18:45:33

I only work in HR but in your situation I wouldn't have put the first sickness down as that, if it was merely an appointment. I would have suggested you use whatever method your place of work has in place to facilitate attending (so working back the time or booking annual leave). I mean, you weren't actually sick so shouldn't be recorded as such. Unless you requested it to go down as sick?

I would say the second illness would be classed as pregnancy related, even though it was to end the pregnancy, so I personally wouldn't have included this in any absence reviews I did.

catgirl1976 Fri 20-May-16 18:55:39

Thanks Dragon - that's helpful

I'm pretty sure it shouldnt be included but I just don't know so it's good to know another HR person wouldn't have included it

Choughed Sat 21-May-16 08:39:35

I'm pretty sure that legally it doesn't count as pregnancy related sickness.

Why do you want to dispute it? You were off for a legitimate health reason, what action do you expect them to take?

lougle Sat 21-May-16 09:07:45

I'm pretty sure it would count as pregnancy related because it is a miscarriage. The fact that it is a miscarriage triggered by legally administered drugs is irrelevant. Miscarriage is covered by the Equality Act 2010.

FishWithABicycle Sat 21-May-16 09:19:13

I think you could and should argue that time off for abortion should be treated same as pregnancy related. The reason pregnancy related sickness isn't counted is because it's illegal to treat female employees less favourably than male. A male employee wouldn't need to have time off work to have an abortion so you only needed this time off because you are a woman. It is therefore discriminatory to penalise you for it.

Depending on how evil your employers are it may all be OK - normally the "first trigger" is just a review meeting to establish whether the calculated Bradford factor really is revealing something that shoe dealt with under disciplinary procedures. In cases like yours these meetings can result in absences being re-categorised and the Bradford score recalculated as below the threshold.

catgirl1976 Sat 21-May-16 11:02:37

They are completely evil

I'm looking for another job and considering constructive dismissal

The action I would like them to take is not to issue me with a disciplinary sanction or put me on "attendance monitoring" becuase I had time off for an abortion, both of which I think they are planning to do.

I have had 2 days off sick in total since the start of this year which I don't think is hugely excessive but if they count the abortion then in a rolling twelve months it hits a trigger (only brought in last week) If they discount it, which I feel they should I have a BF score of 8 which is fine

Choughed Sat 21-May-16 11:09:19

Sorry to hear that, in that case fight it tooth and nail.

How long have you worked there?

catgirl1976 Sat 21-May-16 11:15:45

I've been there 11 years! It''s turned very nasty recently. I was on the Senior Management team for 5 years but was removed from it (along with 3 other colleagues) with no consultation or notice or reason given other than they were streamlining things.

Ive had my own office for 8 years but am now being told I have to "hot desk" which feels like 2 "demotions"

I had a disciplinary for being off sick with tonsilitis and not ringing in by half nine (was too ill and asleep and rang asap to apologise and let them know - wasn't even due in the office so they hadn't even missed me - never not rung in before in 1 years and no one else has ever had a disciplinary for that) This was a week ago and Ive not had the minutes or the outcome

Ive bounced into a new role that I didnt want and didnt apply for but felt I had no choice - there was no handover from my old job which Ive been doing for the last 11 years

And now this - I've just had enough sad

catgirl1976 Sat 21-May-16 11:19:12

"I've been bounced into a new role" that should say

Sorry for the rant - the whole atmosphere is just so toxic

In my new role I attend customer meetings and they check up on my train times to make sure I went at the right time even though I have never not attended a meeting or been late, I get constantly quizzed on where I am and it feels like everything I do is monitored and there's just no reason for that

I am on anti-depressants and beta blockers for work related stress and anxiety (though declined to be signed off and have continued working) which thye know about and just seem to be trying to make things worse for me not better

Sorry for the rant

LineyReborn Sat 21-May-16 12:22:03

They sound awful, catgirl. And no your pregnancy related absence should be calculated separately from your Bradford score.

I'm not HR but was a union rep once.

catgirl1976 Sat 21-May-16 12:26:29

Thanks Liney X

I've got an interview next week so fingers crossed

I need to get out of there!

MummyBex1985 Sat 21-May-16 21:38:22

The pregnancy/maternity discrimination provisions are largely in place to encourage women to remain in the workplace whilst balancing their family lives. In my view, the legislation wasn't created for the purpose you suggest.

You are protected against discrimination occurring because of a pregnancy related illness. A termination consultation isn't a pregnancy related illness; pregnancy wise, you weren't poorly - you just didn't want to continue with the pregnancy. Therefore, you wouldn't have any protection for that appointment (IMO).

Arguably though, you could have a point regarding the after effects of the termination, if you were absent. It may be a medically induced miscarriage but it's a miscarriage nonetheless.

I haven't come across this issue in practice so I can't say I'm 100% correct here. Just my view.

And I apologise for my reply seeming a tad clinical! Comes with being a lawyer I think!

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