TUC advises employers on what to do when it snows
As the arctic conditions spread across the UK, causing hundreds of schools to close, working parents have the added problem of what to do with their children even if they can make it into work, says the TUC.
With the cold snap likely to continue for several more days, the TUC says that if employees have internet, e-mail and phones at home, the most sensible solution for employers is to allow them to work there during snowy periods.
Communication between employers and their staff, and between workers and their managers is key when the weather takes a turn for the worse, says the TUC.
Good employers will already have 'bad weather' policies in place and will have told their workforce what is expected of them when snow and ice close the workplace or make the usual commute difficult or hazardous. Any 'snow' policy should also cover what parents should do if their local schools close and they have no alternative means of childcare.
Clearly workers should make every effort to get in to work and not simply give up at the first sight of a few snowflakes, says the TUC. But embarking on a journey which could put themselves or the emergency services in danger, is not a sensible move either, particularly if they live in isolated, rural areas.
Employers also need to be careful that they aren't putting undue pressure on their employees to get into work, or are putting them in a situation where staff feel they have no choice but to go into work or risk facing possible disciplinary action or losing a day's pay.