Upon my return (after 26 weeks maternity leave) I was advised that a large portion of my role would be given to the man who covered my leave as (and I quote) ‘a reward’ for his performance

I work in IT and have provided services for both large and small organisations, building up an excellent reputation in the process. Currently, I am working for Local Government and this is where I found out I was pregnant.

My Husband and I began trying shortly after we got married. It was really important for both of us that we did this whilst we both had stability, and a decent wage coming in. I have been working with the Council for nearly 4 years, and did not anticipate any issues at all. Everyone around me seemed to have been really well treated whilst having a child. This was especially important to us as I provide the largest part of our income, and we didn’t want to risk starting a family in an organisation that would ostracise me for it.

Whilst I was pregnant everything was fine. I was managing additional responsibility without any difficulties, though my pregnancy wasn’t exactly textbook. This meant I took a month of annual leave before my maternity started due to severe back pain, and difficulties moving.

During my maternity leave, the organisation was dissolved and moved into a different council. All structures and pay scales were to remain the same until a re-organisation in late 2016; we would just be working for another Council.

Upon my return (after 26 weeks maternity leave) I was advised that a large portion of my role would be given to the man who covered my leave as (and I quote) ‘a reward’ for his performance. Under government rules, this shouldn’t have happened, as I was entitled to return to my role as it was. We are about to enter into a restructure, and I have effectively been side-lined. My responsibilities have been significantly decreased, and my role is now not client facing.

With a great deal of effort, I managed to claw back some line management responsibility, but it may not be enough to justify my current pay scale and I fear I will lose pay in the re-org. Something that (as the ‘breadwinner’) I can’t afford.

I am taking Union advice and planning a swift exit. I never thought this would happen.

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