They hadn’t expected me to come back anyway

I worked as a HR Assistant for a medium-sized construction company (in my sector of the company I was responsible for c.250 employees) and had also been acting up to cover a senior colleague who was on her maternity leave. After I went on maternity leave all seemed fine until I popped in for a social visit to introduce my new baby, when he was about 4 months. I then found out that the entire HR department (c.15 people) had been restructured on the first day of my maternity leave. My immediate team had been changed, so though my job title remained the same the role itself was significantly reduced. I started a complaint and was told variously that I should have been checking my work emails if I wanted to know about any changes that affected me; that it was policy not to contact me on maternity leave (though they had contacted me about other matters); that they hadn’t expected me to come back anyway.
The complaint was still dragging on when my return-to-work date arrived and it was made very clear to me that I was being too awkward to be welcome back. I handed in my notice and started tribunal proceedings, but I soon became pregnant with my second child. The tribunal process was hard and the stress of it was just too much, so I stopped proceedings. Of course, that was before you had to pay upfront for a tribunal, in which case I probably wouldn’t even have considered it.

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