Rachel has welcomed Government plans to make flexible working a day one right – a victory in her campaign to empower workers.

Ever since she was first elected in 2017, Rachel has lobbied Ministers to back policies which promote flexible working.

Rachel wrote an essay on flexible working back in 2019 and set out how the satisfaction and control gained from being able to choose when and where to work can be transformational.

And now under Government plans to modernise the way we work, every employee in Great Britain will be given the right to request flexible working – regardless of time served.

The proposals consider whether limiting an employee’s application for flexible working to one per year continues to represent the best balance between individual and business needs.

The consultation, launched by the Government to seek the views of employees and businesses, also looks at cutting the current 3-month period an employer has to consider any request.

If an employer cannot accommodate a request, as can be the case, they would need to think about what alternatives they could offer – for example, if they couldn’t change their employee’s hours on all working days, they could consider making the change for certain days instead.

The consultation also looks at a range of flexible working methods such as job-sharing, flexitime, compressed, annualised and staggered hours, as well as phased retirement – not just working from home.

Flexible working will allow employees to balance their work and home life, including helping people who are managing childcare commitments or other caring responsibilities as well as ensuring that people who are under-represented in Britain’s workforce, such as new parents or disabled people, have access to more opportunities.

The proposed changes would also mean that all applicants will know they can ask for flexible working before applying for a job. Equally, employers will need to consider whether they can offer flexible working before advertising.

Rachel said: “Having worked in business for three decades before entering Parliament, I have long championed flexible working and the huge benefits it brings, not just for employees, but for businesses too.

“Ever since I was first elected I have been lobbying Ministers to back policies which will support flexible working, so I’m thrilled the Government is delivering on its manifesto commitment to make flexible working a day one right.”

To respond to the Government’s consultation visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/making-flexible-working-the-default. The consultation closes on December 1st 2021.