date: 30 May 2012
embargo: 00.01hrs Thursday 31 May 2012
With just days to go until the Diamond Jubilee weekend (taking place from Saturday 2 June until Tuesday 5 June) the TUC is today (Thursday) calling on employers to do the right thing and ensure that workers do not miss out on the unique four-day celebrations.
Special bank holidays such as the Diamond Jubilee are not included in the minimum statutory paid annual leave entitlement, so workers are relying on the goodwill of their employers for an extra day's leave or overtime for those that need to work.
Most sensible employers will be giving staff an extra day's paid leave to allow them to enjoy the festivities in full. But the TUC is concerned that some penny-pinching bosses are treating Tuesday as a standard working day and expect their staff to come in as normal.
Whilst it may be too late for employers who have told staff to come in to work to change their minds and give them the Monday and Tuesday off, they can at least give staff premium pay rates or an extra day off later in the year, the TUC says.
For people having to work over the Diamond Jubilee weekend, such as emergency services and retail staff, the TUC believes that their employers should offer them an extra day's leave as well as their contracted overtime pay.
TUC General Secretary Brendan Barber said: 'The Diamond Jubilee weekend should be celebrated by everyone.
'But sadly hundreds of thousands of staff are likely to miss out on the festivities because some short-sighted employers are forcing them to work. Many bosses are not even giving them the premium pay rates they'd normally get on a bank holiday.
'While this penny pinching may save companies a few quid in the short term they lose more over time by generating widespread resentment amongst staff that may make them less likely to go that extra mile in the weeks and months to come.
'There is still time for employers to give staff an extra day off to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee in full. But where rotas have already been made and staff are committed to working they should be given premium pay rates and an extra day's leave later in the year.
'Workers have had enough bad news recently with taxes and under-employment rising, and take home pay going in the opposite direction. Let's at least make this coming weekend one where everyone can celebrate and have a good time.'
NOTES TO EDITORS:
- Staff at Edinburgh Woollen Mills (http://bit.ly/GXBq97) and Four Season Healthcare Trust have also been told that they will not receive an extra day's paid leave for working on Tuesday. A longer list of employers is available on the GMB website http://bit.ly/K9oPof
- The last government helped workers who would not otherwise get any time off for bank holidays by increasing the national minimum statutory paid annual leave entitlement from 4 weeks to 5.6 weeks, and stipulating that the increased entitlement included bank holidays. However, no provision was made to increase this entitlement in years when a special bank holiday is called, leaving workers to rely on their employers to choose to offer an extra day's leave or overtime for those that need to work.
- Government advice states that a worker's entitlement to time off on a special bank holiday depends on their contract. It advises businesses to consider 'whether it will affect the morale of your workers if your business doesn't join in with the celebrations'. http://bit.ly/HhGl4w
- All TUC press releases can be found at www.tuc.org.uk
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Press release (700 words) issued 31 May 2012
This page http://www.tuc.org.uk/workplace/tuc-21082-f0.cfm
printed 22 May 2013 at 21:41 hrs by 220.127.116.11