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Bad weather commuting's snow joke
As staff struggle back into work following the heavy snows, there's confusion in some places as to how employers should treat time lost through bad weather, with some people being told they'll lose pay for time missed, or have to take annual leave to cover it. Whether your employer can withhold pay if you don't get to work due to bad weather depends on your contract, or the usual practice in your workplace. A lot of companies do have ‘bad weather’ policies, so that employees who are genuinely kept away from work by dangerous weather and lack of transport still get paid. And if the office or factory doesn't open because of the bad weather, many employers will have to pay staff who turn up to work. If those employers who don’t have ‘bad weather’ policies refuse to pay staff or force them to take holiday, the TUC is worried they'll cause unnecessary resentment among those who've been kept away from work through no fault of their own, or worse make some people risk traveling to work in genuinely dangerous situations. Many employees are also able to work from home to at least some capacity, thanks to technology linking them to an office network, and this might be a useful alternative for both staff and employers to consider, as a way of making the best of the situation. The TUC's Brendan Barber said: "Across the country, people have been braving the elements to get into work. Employers and workers must keep each other informed as to whether it's safe, or even possible, to commute to and from work. But for many the bad weather and lack of public transport have made their commute impossible. Good employers will already have 'bad weather' policies so that those who are unable to work are still paid." "Scrooge bosses that dock pay and take away holiday will add to their business woes by creating resentment among staff. Workers who have been prevented from working through no fault of their own should not have to foot the bill for the bad weather conditions. Instead we urge all employers to look after their staff during these adverse weather conditions."