Motion 31 and amendments
In 2018, Congress resolved that the government should introduce the right to
request flexible working from the first day of employment. This year, we need to take that further.
The FDA has partnered with the Global Institute for Women’s Leadership at King’s College, London to commission research to analyse current civil service flexible working trends. Whilst posts are advertised as flexible, in reality there is a reluctance to promote those with compressed-, reduced- or remote-working patterns to senior roles within the civil service. Our research, due to be published in autumn, will enable us to lobby employers to proactively support those seeking to work flexibly across the public sector.
Genuine flexible working for everyone – not just working from home because of limited office desk space – can help build more diverse leadership, break the glass ceiling and reduce the gender pay gap. Many employees with working patterns outside of 9-5 perceive these to be a barrier to promotion. Flexible working is no longer just for parents, or those with caring responsibilities. True flexibility allows both the employer and any employee to balance their work around their life, without detriment to either.
Congress notes that organisations that offer flexible working confirm that it aids recruitment and retention, improves productivity, reduces stress and makes staff feel more valued and motivated.
Congress calls on the government and employers to not only introduce a ‘day one’ right to flexible working, but to also:
i. advertise how roles can be worked flexibly, with explicit examples provided in job descriptions
ii. separate out remote working policies from flexible working provisions
iii. promote flexible working at senior levels, encouraging a more inclusive
iv. promote flexible working within public services and encourage private sector employers to offer it to all workers as a positive workforce measure.
Congress believes there is a culture of denying flexible working to men. This culture negatively impacts on women as they may have to take up more flexible working to compensate, which can result in progression opportunities being reduced.
Congress resolves to campaign for flexible working practices to be equally
available regardless of gender.
Seconder: Chartered Society of Physiotherapy