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Council signs up to TUC charter

Published on Tuesday, November 8, 2016

LEICESTER City Council is signing up to a charter setting out what help it will give to employees who are diagnosed with a terminal illness.

The TUC is asking organisations to sign up to its Dying to Work charter, a voluntary code which pledges to support, protect and guide employees throughout their work following a terminal diagnosis.

The charter asks employers to recognise that any staff who are diagnosed with a terminal illness need support and understanding, not additional stress or worry.

It affirms that safe and reasonable work can help people to maintain dignity, offer a valuable distraction and can be therapeutic in itself.

Employers signing up to the charter pledge to provide employees with the “security of work, peace of mind and the right to choose the best course of action for themselves and their families which helps them through this challenging period with dignity and without undue financial loss.”

City mayor Peter Soulsby and deputy mayor Cllr Rory Palmer will both sign the charter, along with the TUC and the council’s chief operating officer, HR representative and trades union representatives.

Peter Soulsby said: “It’s very important that employees who find themselves in this position know that they can rely on the support of their employer. If you’ve just received devastating news about your health, the last thing you want to have to worry about is your rights at work.

“That’s why we’re happy to sign up to the TUC’s charter. I hope that many other local employers will do so too.”

Cllr Palmer added: “Discrimination in any form has no place at work, and that includes discriminating against people on health grounds. But this charter goes further still – it’s about offering extra support, and giving people a range of options so that they can choose what’s best for them. It’s the right and decent thing to do, and it’s something we’re pleased to support.”

Midlands TUC Regional Secretary, Lee Barron, said: “We are delighted that Leicester City Council has committed to sign up to the TUC’s Dying to Work charter.  

“More than 60,000 employees across the country are now covered by the charter. There is real momentum behind the campaign as we work to secure the dignity and protection that all terminally ill workers deserve. 

“Over the coming months we expect more employers to follow Leicester City Council and commit to the charter as we take the Dying to Work campaign into more workplaces.”

All the city council’s trades unions will also be signing the charter.

Gary Garner, UNISON branch secretary, said: “We are pleased that Leicester City Council is leading the way on this initiative.

“Facing terminal illness is traumatic and this charter will help alleviate the worry and stress people face when trying to prolong the life they have left.

“It will protect any in-work benefits likely to be left to loved ones in the event of death. This can help to provide peace of mind for anyone battling terminal illness.”

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