My job was given to my male colleague covering my role, whilst I was on maternity leave. When he resisted, saying that I was coming back, he was told I would be made redundant. And I was. He continued with the same role and job title. The job still exists now.
The organisation was a large, financial services “charity” in London. I had been at the organisation for 3 years, had consistently over-performed and was the highest performing director in 360 appraisal feedback. The other 5 Directors were male and I was the first Director to ever take maternity leave.
I was told that times had changed, they needed someone more “aggressive” in the role and that I would have trouble travelling. Even though this was my second child and I had regularly travelled for the organisation.
I was offered redundancy, which I took because I was so concerned about how to financially support myself, and made to sign a compromise agreement. So I am not able to say anything.
No one challenged the organisation for it’s discriminatory behaviour, even though board members come from senior roles across the legal, public and private sector. It was covered up and made to look as if I had chosen not to come back.
It has taken me 2 years to find a job at the same level.
I would happily campaign or do whatever it takes to stamp out maternity discrimination.