Government Announces Plans to Extend Right to Request Flexible Working

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The Coalition Government has announced plans to extend the right to request flexible working to parents of children aged under 18 from April 2011 (currently this right is available to parents of children under 17, in addition to parents of children under 18 and carers of adults). A further consultation has been announced to be launched later this year to look into the possibility of extending the right to request flexible working to all employees and also to consider a new system of flexible parental leave. Edward Davey, Employment Relations Minister said: “We want to help parents and create a fairer, family-friendly society. This immediate change will give parents of all children regardless of age the same right to request flexible working. It will also make it simpler for employers and employees to identify whether or not they are eligible to make a request.” Lynne Featherstone, Equalities Minister said: “A family-friendly workplace is a business-friendly workplace. Companies are missing out the skills and talents of too many people who are forced to choose between raising a family and having a job, so we will be working with businesses to change this in a way that will make life better for employers, employees and the economy.”

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