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Mother refused reduced hours at work to collect her child from school

Sue worked for a state government agency. Her daughter attended school, and its out-of-school hours care program was full, so parents could be only offered a maximum of three nights per week. Sue asked her manager if she could finish early two days a week to enable her to collect her child, but she was told that it was not possible.

Sue lodged a complaint of discrimination, alleging that her employer had not given consideration to her request to reduced hours because of caring responsibilities. The employer responded that they had considered her request but there wasn't an equivalent part-time position available in their business unit.
Outcome: 
Following negotiations between the parties, the employer agreed to allow Sue to finish early on two days each week. The employer also said they would attempt to look for a suitablly-funded position that supports reduced working hours. On her part, Sue agreed that if her employer was unable to negotiate flexible working hours with another business unit or agency, and that unit or agency can provide reasonable justification for not being able to accept this, she will accept the position.