Balancing work with family life can be a real challenge. That’s why the Trust offers a number of benefits to make life that little bit easier!
Maternity and Paternity Leave
As a member of staff you will have the option to access our generous maternity and paternity leave.
Staff who have one year of service at the beginning of the 11th week before their expected week of childbirth (EWC) and 26 weeks continuous service with the Trust at the beginning of the 15th week before their EWC are entitled to full maternity leave entitlements of 8 weeks full pay, 18 weeks half pay plus SMP,13 weeks SMP only, and up to 13 weeks unpaid leave. This is a total of 52 weeks or one year. Paid time off is also allowed to attend doctor/hospital appointments and antenatal classes.
Staff who have 52 weeks continuous service by the beginning of the expected week of childbirth (EWC) are entitled to two weeks full pay. If they have 26 weeks continuous service at 15 weeks before the EWC they are entitled to two weeks off with full pay for three days and the rest at Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) rate.
Shared Parental Leave
As a member of staff within our Trust you can access both Shared Parental Leave and Shared Paternal pay if you have a baby or adopt a child.
Adoption entitlement is similar to maternity leave and paid time off is allowed for staff to attend official meetings as part of the adoption process.
There is a lot of support within our Trust for carers. This includes Emergency Carers Leave, where in emergency situations and unforeseen circumstances all staff are entitled to take short periods of leave with pay, from a half day to three days in any one period, up to a maximum of 12 days four times a year, this applies to immediate family only. There is also a number of unpaid leave policies such as time off for dependents and parental leave which allow people with dependants and children to take time off without pay to allow them to fulfil caring roles.
For those staff within our Trust who are looking after or supporting someone, the Carers Register is a great way to find our information about what’s available in Northern Trust. The Register is a contact list so that we can keep carers up to date regularly with what’s going on. As part of the Carers Register you will have access to our Carer Support Programme. The programme is renewed every six months and those on our mailing list receive it first. Classes are available to promote carer well-being and personal development. Events vary with anything from first aid training to mindfulness as well as carers catch ups or simply some tea, coffee nibbles and a chat with other carers. See the 2019 Events programme attached. Another resource you would receive by mail is the Carers newsletter detailing what has been happening across the Trust and also articles from carers and other organisations – helping to keep everyone connected.
Digital Resources for Carers
The Trust is also a member of Employers for Carers and through this we have exclusive access to a designated carer website www.carersdigital.org. This brings all resources together onto a platform that is easy to navigate. On the webpage you will find eLearning entitled “About me” – to help build resilience and the importance of networks, a nutritional advice section, all the Carers NI/UK resources and guides and an online forum. Carers have 24/7 access and the website works on all iPhone, smartphone, Android, tablet and web browsers.
Tax-Free Childcare Scheme
The government has introduced a Tax-Free Childcare scheme which provides parents with a tax refund of up to 20% of their childcare costs. Please note that as this is a benefit in kind there will be tax, national insurance and pension implications. These should be fully understood before entering into an agreement.
Time off for Dependants
Time off for dependants leave allows an employee to take a reasonable amount of unpaid time off during their working hours to deal with certain unexpected or sudden emergencies and to make necessary longer-term arrangements. More information is available in our Flexible Working Policy