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Not told of Job opportunity while on mat leave

Discussion in 'Pay and conditions' started by Gizmo76, Feb 5, 2017.

  1. Gizmo76

    Gizmo76 New commenter

    Currently on maternity leave and just found out (via Facebook not officially) that someone in my department got the head of department role. I was not even made aware that there was a vacancy so wasn't able to apply! I'm assuming it will have been emailed out as an internal application but I don't check my emails while off.

    What are my rights? Am I obligated to check my emails? Should they have rung or written to me to let me know? What should I do about it?


    Ps the person who got it is a man with less experience than me. If I had applied, I would have been more qualified.
  2. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    If the facts are correct (I'd check them first), then seek advice from your Union.
  3. GLsghost

    GLsghost Star commenter

    As a woman on maternity leave it would be unlawful of your employer to subject you to unfavourable treatment, which could give rise to a complaint under s18(2) EqA2010.

    If you had not been notified of the vacancy, you would have a complaint.

    Be careful and take advice from your union, however, before you go off all guns blazing.

    Your employer has a duty to ensure you are kept informed and up-to-date - receive newsletters, internal adverts etc like everyone else. If the practice in the workplace is to send this out by email, everyone was notified of the vacancy in this way, you could access your work emails to check for updates but have just chosen not to do so, I am not sure that you have a complaint. It's the equivalent of them writing but you not opening the letters. They can hardly be liable in the case.

    The legislation says that you cannot be treated 'unfavourably'. It does not say that you must be treated more favourably.

    There is an argument, I suppose, that the rest of the department would have had back-up knowledge from the informal discussions that would have taken place about the vacancy and that you have suffered unfavourable treatment because you were not there to participate in those informal discussions. You could argue that the employer should have been aware of that and taken particular steps to flag-up the vacancy to you.

    It's always going to be a messy argument, though. See whether the union thinks it might have legs.

    And act quickly.
    wanet likes this.

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