Advice & Support

Refusal to take childcare issues into account around shifts: ask the expert

Refusal to take childcare issues into account around shifts: ask the expert

I worked part time with a care company for a short time from 28 October up Feb 2014. Within this time I made a request for a change in my availability which I was informed would take up to 28 days. I made the request as I was employed as part time and had two children and was working almost every day of the week and all day with short breaks in between. My employer then called me into the office to discuss my change and informed me it could not be accepted and to call back to office the next week with a new availability sheet. I still put down I would work 5 days a week but between 12.00 and 1.00 I couldn't as I had to pick my child up from school. Within that time my employer still put calls on my rota for the time I informed I could not do,every day, which was causing me a lot of problems and stress. I went back to the office the following week and handed my new availability sheet to her, she barely looked at it, and said these will not be accepted so I will have to let you go. From there I worked my 1 weeks' notice then left. I truly feel that she was being unfair to me. Would this be unfair dismissal? At the time I had just finished my probation period of 12 weeks, the week before so could this affect my chances?

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Can they force me to go full time?: ask the expert

Can they force me to go full time?: ask the expert

I was recruited on a part-time basis just over a year ago. The opportunities in the team I'm responsible for have grown / my team are winning business and the company now either want me to go full-time, or are saying I need to resign..or they will make me redundant as the job is now full-time. They feel the COO should never have agreed to employee for this position part-time. The 3 days per week is proving a challenge (I'm always doing 4 days!). They are not open to exploring job share opportunities at all & dismiss it. I'd appreciate advice on where I stand on this and what approach I should take.

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What are my rights with regard to pregnancy sickness: ask the expert

What are my rights with regard to pregnancy sickness: ask the expert

I am 13 weeks pregnant and informed my manager of this  early on as I was suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum, extreme vomiting. The condition continues to make me ill and I have thus requested to go from full-time to part-time and will be assessed as to my suitability for this by Occupational Health, although it is clear my manager wishes me to continue full time. As a worker on a short-term contract am I within my rights to request this? I have forwarded doctor's evidence to HR and the GPs are supporting me. Also, according to the institution's HR policy all employees, including contractors, are entitled to eight weeks sick leave after three months, but I am concerned that if I do take time off, even a week or two, I will be dismissed. I would be grateful for any advice as to my rights.

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Can my shifts be changed?

Can my shifts be changed?

When I returned to work after maternity leave, I had a fixed working pattern where certain shifts were agreed with my line manager and I organised childcare to meet these days. The company have recently tried to change the terms and conditions and I have, along with other members of staff, not agreed to these. The company are now trying to change my shifts and also make me work night shifts. I have written to explain that I am struggling to meet these demands due to childcare issues. Can they do this to me?

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Pressured to come in early, unpaid: ask the expert

Pressured to come in early, unpaid: ask the expert

I applied for flexible working 10-4 (son's nursery only opens at 8am). I am meant to start at 9am to finish at 5:30 with one hour lunch. I am a line manager. This was refused and I was offered 9-4:30 with 30 mins lunch. Since then I have been constantly pressured to sort out childcare in the morning, even though I am already spending money as a single parent on nursery fees. A few days ago I was told by my manager that if I do not sort out my childcare to be at work before 9am (say 8:30, unpaid) to make sure the department is run more smoothly. I have made mention that my mobile phone is available for support and getting to work before 9am is really a matter of choice. This has been met with disapproval and lo and behold I was told if I did not sort things out my position will be readvertised. I have only been back at work for 5.5 months. I am having a turbulent personal life at the moment, but the unnecessary pressure from work and underhand bullying is not helping at all. Please help.

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