7 March - Immediate Release
Probation Union Challenges Employer Proposals for Maternity Leave on International Women’s Day
National Probation Service plans to offer improved maternity leave in exchange for staff giving up some of their annual leave has been branded unacceptable and potentially discriminatory by probation union Napo.
The proposal will see NPS staff – 70% of whom are women – forced to exchange three days annual leave in order for their maternity and other family friendly policies to be harmonised with other civil servants working for the National Offender Management Service (NOMS).
Sarah Friday, Napo National Official and lead for WiN (Women in Napo) said of the changes: “Proposing to harmonise this key policy under these terms is made all the more galling to staff working in the NPS as the senior leadership is predominantly women including the Director, Minister and Head of HR. The lack of progress on this issue is frustrating to staff who feel they are being treated unfairly in comparison with NOMS and other civil service colleagues.”
To press the issue with NOMS, on International Women’s Day (Wednesday 8 March) Napo will be asking its members and supporters to tweet their support for the Napo campaign for equal rights using the hashtag #MaternityRightsMatter
For further information and possible media opportunities please contact Napo Katie Lomas, National Vice-Chair on 07714 255 380 or Sarah Friday, National Official and lead for WiN (Women in Napo) on 07824 365 270.
Notes to Editors:
In 2014 following the abolition of Probation Trusts all staff transferred to either the NPS (National Probation Service) or one of the CRCs (Community Rehabilitation Companies). Staff transferred to the NPS have had to adopt Civil Service policies, some which are more restrictive, but are not yet allowed to benefit from the more generous Civil Service Maternity/shared parental leave pay. Since the NPS was formed Napo negotiators have raised this issue - and perhaps not surprisingly NOMS haven’t been swift to act. The situation was made worse in 2015 when, shortly before the General Election, the Government launched improved paternity provisions and the right to shared maternity leave, saying they wanted to be standard bearers for better ways of working.