Key principles

The organisation’s absence policy is based on the following principles:

  • 1 As a responsible employer we undertake to provide payments to employees who are unable to attend work due to sickness. (See the Company Sick Pay scheme.)
  • 2 Regular, punctual attendance is an implied term of every employee’s contract of employment—we ask each employee to take responsibility for achieving and maintaining good attendance.
  • 3 We will support employees who have genuine grounds for absence for whatever reason. This support includes:

a ‘special leave’ for necessary absences not caused by sickness b a flexible approach to the taking of annual leave c access to counsellors where necessary

d rehabilitation programmes in cases of long-term sickness absence.

  • 4 We will consider any advice given by the employee’s GP on the ‘Statement of Fitness for Work’. If the GP advises that an employee ‘may be fit for work’ we will discuss with the employee how we can help them get back to work—for example, on flexible hours, or altered duties.
  • 5 We will use an occupational health adviser, where appropriate, to: a help identify the nature of an employee’s illness

b advise the employee and their manager on the best way to improve the employee’s health and wellbeing.

  • 6 The company’s disciplinary procedures will be used if an explanation for absence is not forthcoming or is not thought to be satisfactory.
  • 7 We respect the confidentiality of all information relating to an employee’s sickness. This policy will be implemented in line with all data protection legislation and the Access to Medical Records Act 1988.
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