Open letter to Action For Children.
I take my job very seriously. I care about the people I work with and the parents and children I see every day. I see children as newborns and get to see them grow up into awesome little people, I get to see parents be brilliant and make friends with others in similar situations. I see that the work Action For Children does is invaluable, to all families including those in crisis and those who are not.
I work because I care about children but like most people, I also work because I have to earn money to put a roof over my own children’s heads, and put food in their tummies. My own children will always come first if they need me in an emergency or if they are not well enough to go to school or nursery, and Action For Children as an employer have been providing a cushion of 5 individuals days of Dependants’ Leave per year. It doesn’t sound like a lot, especially when you can only take one of these individual days at a time, and this makes things very complicated when your two kids get chicken pox one after the other, but I’d just use up annual leave and think myself lucky that I could just use annual leave and my babies would recover relatively unscathed after the spotty fortnight.
However, today I read on an email that you are taking away our right to 5 paid Dependants’ Leave days a year, all of them. Instead we have to pay back the time we take out to care for our unwell children, or take it as unpaid leave, neither of which are practical or feasible – especially as childcare rates are increasing and tax credits are being sliced left, right and centre.
I am well aware that there other, much more serious matters going on in this country right now for me to be moaning about losing some paid Dependants’ Leave, and I should be lucky I even have a (relatively) secure job. But I do find it extremely frustrating and It really doesn’t fill me with hope that my employer cares about me being a parent myself, or what effect this will have on our own families. I hope in the near future you might reconsider this change in policy to reflect the needs of working parents and their own children.
Children’s Centre Assistant.