Is the MoD just another employer?



What do you think, is there room for 'family friendly' policies within the armed forces?

Royal Navy officer wins court battle

An MoD spokesman said it was too early to comment
A Royal Navy officer has won her sexual discrimination case against the Ministry of Defence (MoD) for its refusal to allow her to work part-time.
Chief petty officer Adele MacMillan was awarded £9,069 compensation by an employment tribunal in Edinburgh.

Mrs MacMillan, 39, took the MoD to a tribunal after the Royal Navy refused to allow her to reduce her workload after the birth of her second child.

An MoD spokesman said it was considering the implications of the determination.

The mother-of-two, from Stirling, joined the Royal Navy in 1983 and rose to the position of operations manager at HMS Gannet - a helicopter search and rescue centre based at Prestwick Airport, Ayrshire.

I want the Royal Navy to accept that it is not above the law

Adele MacMillan
She requested changes to her working hours in order to help her accommodate childcare after the birth of her daughter, Kirsty, three.

But the MoD refused this request on the grounds that all personnel are employed on a full-time basis.

Speaking after the case, Mrs MacMillan said: "Winning the case means so much to my family. I hope that all the tears and heartache have been worthwhile.

'Blanket ban'

"I want the Royal Navy to accept that it is not above the law and introduce policies that prove it is prepared to show more care towards the welfare needs of its employees in respect of work-life balance."

The Equal Opportunities Commission Scotland backed Mrs MacMillan's action.

The commission's Rowena Arshad said: "The MoD's refusal to grant Mrs MacMillan's request amounted to a blanket ban on part-time and flexible working that we feel had to be challenged.

"Flexible working should be available across all sectors. It is essential that employers realise that in order to retain valuable members of staff and in order to recruit from the widest pool of talent possible they must put family friendly policies in place.

"I hope that the MoD will now review its current position on flexible working."

Full-time basis

The MoD said it was considering the long-term implications of the ruling.

A spokesman said: "All members of the Royal Navy serve on a full-time basis.

"The concept of part-time working is at odds with a 24/7, 365-days-a-year military commitment.

"It is accepted that Mrs MacMillan had difficulties juggling her domestic arrangements but she was able to meet her work commitments.

"The determination is now being considered by the MoD and it is too early to say what the implications might be."

Source: BBCi News


Ye another one, had enough of the services getting my pension sorted out type thing by suing the MOD, how the hell can you reduce hours from a fulltime contract? both parties sign it.
for God's sake, stop all these pinko's from sitting in judgmenets for tribunuals and the suchlike.
and NO the MOD is not like any other type of employer,...not many others can send you off to get killed at the wish of a politician
this is clearly bollox.

What about the two female Air traffic control officers at Yeovilton, who left the regular service(RN) to have babies etc...but who joined FleetAIRARM Royal Navy Reserve and are on a FTRS system ,but with reduced hours in order to jobshare.

Navy keeps 2 people where they are needed. Keeps two lassies happy with family. Dont know about pension.

When will women realise its not discrimination to ask you to do the job you applied for. If you dont like it leave.

No??? because you want to keep your pension,3 and a half day working week, 1 and a half sports days(not that many wrens take up the opportunity)and late mondays starts, early friday leave
No names, no pack drill.

Lots of Matelots using this means Jolly, including some of rank. So, no names mentioned, or clues to identities please.

Good point on the RNVR/FTRS route though. Wonder why that wasn't mentioned?
FTRS would not be an attractive option for these people, since there is no entitlement to married accom; they'd have to pay the full whack outside.
Rgr telling off re clue to names. Wilco in future. Altho I have to say everyone in 819 knows anyway.

(In that case you may wish to check AAC board where its not too hard to put names to asterisks on LE Commisions post!)

As for MQs...RN vastly smaller no of MQs. But very nice advance of pay/gratuity to enable private purchase at 23...which then enables you for even more goodies in pay...)

Also i think, but cannot be certain on this that at least one is/was married to regular officer so HE can qualify for benefits...

What is happening now is just extracting the michael on a continuous basis. When will people realise they are not in a civvy 9-5, but training for, maintaining for, preparing for WAR and support thereof ! Thats what I joined for FFS.

'Sorry Saddam/Generalissimo Galtieri/Gerry/Slobba but I cant make it Thursday as Ive got to pick the kids up from creche'...doesnt quite have the same ring to it does it ??
I know we have had this discussion on another thread, but I have to say, I cannot understand on what legal basis the military have to comply with ordinary civilian employment law. Is there not some kind of special case, or separate statutory basis for HM Forces? Do HM Forces have to comly with every single piece of 'civilian' law?
Clearly the MoD or, more particularly, whichever service one has joined, is much more than simply just another employer - those of us who are serving expect a lot from our employer in exchange for our willingness to make the ultimate sacrifice when called to do so.

In the absence of more information, one might surmise that this particular individual is a gold digging bitch who needs peeling and dipping in salt. The alternative view might be that she is a caring mother who is doing the best for her family when faced with a ruthless and uncaring employer. Methinks the truth lies somewhere in between.

Is she/was she prepared to deploy on operations to do the same job and leave her children in the care of her partner? I wonder.

I am afraid that, being something of a sceptic, I feel that those who occupy long running sedentary positions in the RN and RAF all need a short sharp shock of at least 2 6 month tours with no more than a 7 month TI in order to see how the majority noe live and see how they like them onions! Whilst I don't say that it's right, it is reality and until the system and the individual tour interval reduces to the 24 month aspiration, EVERYONE should be liable to do THEIR bit!
I have to sit with my face in my hands in total amazement somtimes..... There are some groups who, despite taking all the advantages, perks and jollies of a good career, want the icing, cream and the b1oody cherry off the top as well.

When will sombody who has a brain and a say in the way things are run have the bo11ocks (was that sexist?) to point out to some of these tribunals that with all the cuts, shortages and overstretch, the armed forces is a place for people with 100% commitment. There is no slack left in the system for the freeloaders of the past. There will always be cushy or should that be cushier jobs in the UK and these should be used as rest postings for the people who have had a hard time. NOT as a creche for mothers who are taking the p1ss!

I say it again and again.... sex, race or whatever...... it's suposed to be EQUALITY, not just giving them everything to the detriment of everyone else and common sense!

Rant over and NO it didn't make me feel any better!
As far as UK law is concerned the MOD is just another employer - remember that military law is applied in addition to, not instead of the rest of the UK legal system.

However, you can have differences if a specific exemption is signed into law. A good example is drivers hours, it doesn't apply on operations or when training for same.

However, the dismal quality of staff within the MOD usually results in them forgetting to apply for exemptions or ignoring the fact that they don't have one with the result that they lose a lot of court cases.

The obvious example here was requiring women to leave when they get pregnant. Regardless of what the MOD and forces thought, what the women were told and what we might think should have happened they were dismissed unlawfully - so when the case was taken to court the MOD lost. They did try and defend it of course, which merely ensured that the judge loaded the award to teach them not to defend the indefensible in future.

I find it difficult to criticise someone seeking to have the current law of the land applied to them. Where I would point the finger is at the idiots at the top who fail to ensure that their policies are lawful and then fail to get the law changed to better serve the forces. Blaming the individual concerned lets them off the hook and allows them to evade responsibility for their incompetence.
Nice reply OOTS - now, I find that even more incomprehensible - that it was possible to apply for exemptions and that that exercise was not carried out! Could they be applied for now?

I cannot see how anyone could argue that these exemptions are discriminating against women, as it should be recognised that there have been many men over the years who have left the military because they didn't want to spend long periods away from their children/family, so it can't be claimed that this has suddenly become an issue because there are now mothers serving. If fathers applied for the same kind of family-friendly conditions as mothers appear to be granted, the impact on manning could be horrendous, particularly in undermanned units.

I put forward this argument to apply in military environments only mind you - not civvy ones!
O' history!
Oh for the days when you could just hang the troublemakers from a tree and cast them into a river and it'd be accepted as a just decision for the good of the whole!

Then-again in those days most people had syphillis and those who didn't had then-again maybe not.

...still though, the woman is in the wrong...we need a savoiur from the armys only government ally the Conservatives. Labour hasn't worked, Lib/Dem would cut it all back and the greens would ban all the nasty smoky guns and vehicles and make you all ride bikes into the gunfire. Maybe they'd make Cav Cavalry again, oh the comedy that'd be! :twisted:

Actually I suspect the Greenies would see mounted cav as cruel. They disaprove of Racing so god knows what they'd think of combat horses.

The woman in questions is quite obviously trying it on, but she is able to get away with it because our wonderfull Government failed to insert the necessary exemptions for the armed services when the laws were drafted. Most of these new employment rights are derived from the European Social Chapter and are merely rubber stamped by us, however they are allowed to exempt certain groups such are the military other EU counties did, ours didn't because despite having huge numbers of civil servants none of them actually do anything usefull.
Burn the Witch!
Me or her?!!! (yeah yeah I know - "both")

Someone in uniform at a senior enough level MUST be putting pressure on the Civil Servants In Charge to apply for exemptions!!

Perhaps they think it will be bad for recruitment - I don't think so - the number of women who plan on joining with a view to carrying on when they have children must be pretty small, and the number of people who see that they won't have to carry those few is much greater.
maybe the infantry could employ one legged lesbians , also before "H" hour we could all form up on the LD for some tree hugging...if they want equal ops then this should be fair....what do you think :lol:

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