PHT Special Leave Policy

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					PORTSMOUTH HOSPITALS                                                                        Special leave policy
POLICY AND PROCEDURES




TRUST POLICY AND PROTOCOL FOR SPECIAL LEAVE


CONTENTS LIST:
     a)             Purpose
     b)             Principles
     c)             The Activities Involved
     d)             Responsibilities

APPENDICES
None


MANAGEMENT GUIDANCE NOTES
No


ANNEXES
None


                Originator:                         Corporate HR Manager – Policy & Law

                Approval Route:                     HR Policy Group            1.7.08

                                                    JCNC                       23.7.08

                                                    LNC/DDNC                   7.7.08

                                                    HMC                        14.8.08

                Issue No:                           4

                Date of issue:                      15.8.08

                Review Date:                        August 2010
This policy has been assessed against the PHT Equality impact assessment process


AMENDMENTS RECORD
Date          Page           Comments                                                        Approved by

11.3.08                       Review date extended from October 05 to September               Head of Workforce
                              08                                                              Performance & Information
15.5.08        3              “are” removed from 1st sentence of Activities section           Corporate HR Mgr

25.7.08        Whole doc      The whole document has been rewritten as new.                   Policy Group/JCNC/LNC
                              Numbers have been added to the paragraphs



portsmouth hospitals nhs trust / special leave policy / Issue 4. 15.08.2008   Page 1 of 6    Control date: 07/12/2011
 PORTSMOUTH HOSPITALS                                                                        Special leave policy
 POLICY AND PROCEDURES




Special Leave Policy




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PORTSMOUTH HOSPITALS                                                                        Special leave policy
POLICY AND PROCEDURES




Policy
a) Purpose
1.0       Portsmouth Hospitals NHS Trust (“the Trust”) recognises the importance of supporting its employees to achieve
          a work life balance. As such this policy recognises the fact that from time to time employees will need to take
          time away from work to attend to domestic, personal and family matters of an urgent or unforeseen nature. The
          Trust also recognises the fact that employees may also require time away from work for public duties. The
          purpose of this policy is to provide a framework that enables employees to take reasonable time off in both of
          these circumstances.



b) Principles
2.0       As an equal opportunities employer, the Trust wishes to help employees balance the demands of both their
          work and their personal responsibilities. To this end, the Trust has developed a range of additional leave
          options, both paid and unpaid, which are available to provide employees with a flexible response should they be
          faced with an unexpected domestic, family or personal emergency or have to arrange time to attend for public
          duties.


2.1       It is important that employees do not see the leave outlined in this policy as an addition to their annual leave
          allocation. Each case should be considered on an individual basis, with appropriate documentation produced.


2.2       Types of Special Leave Covered by this policy


2.2.1     The following are the types of leave covered by this policy:


                             Dependant/carer leave
                             Compassionate or bereavement leave
                             Jury service
                             Attendance at Court as a witness
                             Magisterial duties
                             Parliamentary candidature
                             Local Government activities
                             Witness at Appeal or other employment related hearing
                             Governing Body activities




2.2.2     The following types of leave and other work life balance policies are covered by other, separate policies:


                             Maternity, Paternity, Adoption or Parental leave
                             Leave for training or call up with Reserve and Cadet Forces (see Trust Policy for Reservists)
                             Annual leave (see Trust Annual Leave Policy)
                             Time off for Trade Union or staff side representation duties (see the Trust’s Facilities
                              Agreement and Protected Time Policy)

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PORTSMOUTH HOSPITALS                                                                        Special leave policy
POLICY AND PROCEDURES




                             Flexible Working (see Trust’s Flexible Working Policy)
                             Employment Breaks (see Trust Employment Break Policy)


          Any paid leave granted under this policy will be paid at average pay.



c) The Activities Involved
3.1       Dependant Leave / Carer Leave


3.1.1     Employees may be eligible for paid leave of up to ten days in any one-year (i.e. April - March) to care for a
          dependant in the circumstances described below. However this is not an automatic entitlement. A dependant
          may be their child, partner, wife, husband, parent or other relative i.e. someone who relies on them for
          assistance in a particular emergency and/or where they are the primary carer.


3.1.2     Paid leave of absence should be granted to allow a compassionate response to immediate needs. Immediate
          needs means that these events have been unpredictable, unexpected or sudden and could not have been
          planned for. These may arise from varied domestic situations, examples include:


                                   Breakdown of normal carer arrangements for dependants;
                                   Making arrangements for coping longer term with a carer problem;
                                   Illness of a dependant;
                                   To deal with the death of a dependant, e.g. to make funeral arrangements or to attend a
                                    funeral of a dependant;
                                   Accompanying a sick dependant to the GP, clinic or hospital;
                                   To provide assistance when a dependant is injured or assaulted;
                                   To deal with an incident, which involves their child during school hours, e.g. where the
                                    child is suspended from school or becomes ill whilst attending school.


3.1.3     This list is not exhaustive, and the taking of such leave may need to be discussed and agreed between the
          employee and the manager on the return from leave.


3.1.4     Employees must notify the appropriate manager as soon as is reasonably practical of the circumstances giving
          rise to the leave. Notification does not need to be in writing. The manager should then discuss the application
          for Special Leave with the employee, including the period of time it is anticipated they will need to be away from
          work. The manager and employee should together consider all options, which are available in each individual
          circumstance. It may be appropriate to consider a combination of dependant/carer leave, annual leave and
          unpaid leave should the situation require the employee to be away for a more protracted period. In the case of
          long term or terminal illness, where the employee is the sole supporter or carer, the manager may consider
          applications for extended paid leave, unpaid leave, or a combination of the two. Parental leave or a career
          break could also be considered (please see Maternity, Paternity Adoption and Parental Leave Policy or
          Employment Break Policy), as well as a temporary reduction in working hours if appropriate.


3.1.5     Only in exceptional circumstances should an application for special leave be refused. Written reasons should be
          provided wherever there is a refusal. Special Leave will not unreasonably be denied. If an employee believes


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PORTSMOUTH HOSPITALS                                                                            Special leave policy
POLICY AND PROCEDURES




          their request has been unreasonably refused, they should in the first instance discuss the matter with their line
          manager’s manager, Human Resources Adviser or their Trade Union or staff side representative.


3.1.6     Where normal carer arrangements have broken down, in order to be eligible to take dependent/carer leave, an
          employee may be required to provide a doctor's medical certificate or letter signed by the childminder, for
          example.


3.1.7     Where it is possible to plan for any of these eventualities e.g. a babysitter going on holiday, dependent/carer
          leave will not be granted and it is expected that normal annual leave will be used.




3.2 Other Requests


3.2.1     Compassionate/Bereavement Leave – paid leave for a period of up to three days, which can be extended to
          six days in exceptional circumstances for personal reasons, including bereavements and attendance at
          funerals, not already covered by dependants leave.              This leave will be granted at the manager’s discretion,
          each case being judged on its own merits, bearing in mind the effect bereavement may have on people and the
          relationship between the employee and the person they have lost.


3.2.2     Jury Service - paid leave for the duration of the jury service (no fees must be received from the Court with the
          exception of travelling expenses and subsistence). Should the employee not be required to sit as a juror for any
          day or part of a day when they have been called to serve, thought should be given as to whether or not they
          could return to work for that time. This should be discussed prior to the leave and will depend on where the jury
          service is being served and the needs of the department. A copy of the written notification (Jury Service
          Summons) must be provided to the manager prior to the leave being confirmed.
3.2.3     Attendance at Court as a witness - paid leave for the duration of the time the employee is required to attend
          the court (no fees must be received from the Court with the exception of travelling expenses and subsistence).


3.2.4     Magisterial duties - up to 18 days paid in any one leave year.


3.2.5     Parliamentary Candidature - 4 weeks unpaid leave.


3.2.6     Local Government activities (ie a county or county borough council, a district council, a London borough
          council, or a parish or community council) - up to 18 days paid leave in any one leave year.


3.2.7     Witness at Appeal and other employment related-hearings such as tribunals - paid leave for the duration
          for the time the member of staff is required to be present at the appeal or hearing.


3.2.8     Governing Body activities (Local Schools/Colleges) - up to 18 days paid leave in any one leave year.


3.2.9     Managers must ensure that documentary evidence relating to the above reasons for leave is kept as
          appropriate.




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PORTSMOUTH HOSPITALS                                                                        Special leave policy
POLICY AND PROCEDURES




d) Responsibilities

4.1       Employees


4.1.1     Employees are responsible for informing their manager as soon as is practicable of their requirement to take a
          period of special leave. They should also ensure they have documentation where appropriate to prove that the
          leave is required.


4.1.2     Employees are responsible for speaking to their line manager’s manager, Human Resources Adviser or Trade
          Union or staff side representative if you they believe their request for special leave has been unreasonably
          refused.


4.1.3     Should an employee be considering taking on public duties, they should advise their line manager before first
          entering into such commitments and discuss the extent of the commitment and the implications for their work.
          Where an employee is already undertaking such duties prior to commencing employment with the Trust, they
          should notify their line manager as soon as possible after commencement and discuss the implications.



4.2       Managers


4.2.1     Managers are responsible for ensuring that the allocation of special leave is fair, and based on evidence
          provided where necessary. Managers should also keep accurate records to monitor the total leave being taken
          by each employee.


4.2.2     Managers must give written reasons for exceptionally refusing a request for special leave. Any request should
          not unreasonably be refused and they should discuss the matter with the Operational Human Resources team
          before refusing a request.


4.2.3     Managers are also responsible for identifying, and acting on, any abuse of this policy. This action may include
          disciplinary action.


4.3       Operational Human Resources Team


4.3.1     The Operational HR team are responsible for advising all parties on the application of this policy and for
          providing specific management and staff guidance.



e) Review

5.1       The Joint Consultative and Negotiating Committee will monitor the implementation of this policy as part of its
          formal arrangements. The policy will be reviewed on at least a bi-annual basis by the HR Policy Group.




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