Flexible working change welcome but it’s still too easy to say no, says TUC
30 Jun 2014 10:45 AM
From today (Monday) all
employees who’ve been in their jobs for more than half a year have the
right to ask their employers if they can work flexibly.
While welcoming the new right
for helping make it easier for all employees to better balance their work and
home lives (the right to ask for flexible working has until now only been
available to parents and carers), the TUC is concerned that it is still too
easy for employers to say no to any requests they receive.
TUC General Secretary Frances
O’Grady said: “It’s not just parents and carers who can
benefit from flexible working. This sensible and modern approach to work is
something that can improve the lives of everyone.
“Now, thanks to this long
overdue change in the law, employees of all ages will be able to ask their boss
to alter the way they work, regardless of whether they have dependents or
“If they have an employer
who gets why flexible working makes sense, workers who want to take time out to
train, volunteer in a local community project, or simply avoid travelling at
rush hour will now be able to transform their lives.
“But those with
old-fashioned bosses who expect all staff to stick to the same rigid hours day
in day out and always be in the office won’t be so lucky. Employers will
still find it all too easy to block any requests for greater
“Unfortunately the right
to request is only the right to ask nicely. There is nothing to stop employers
saying no. Of course not everyone in every company or organisation is able to
work flexibly – some requests will always need to be turned down. But
without the right to challenge employers, many workers will continue to lose
NOTES TO EDITORS:
- The right to request flexible working was previously only available to
parents of children up to the age of 16, parents of disabled children up to age
18 and carers.
- All TUC press releases can be found at www.tuc.org.uk
Nigel Stanley M: 07831 735844 E: firstname.lastname@example.org