Tribunal claim from foster worker claiming holiday pay

An employment tribunal claim has been lodged on behalf of a foster carer, arguing that she is a worker and entitled to rights such as holiday pay.

The trade union representing her believes that, if successful, the case could open the doors for thousands of similar claims by foster carers. Although foster carers in the UK are paid by local councils, agencies or charities to look after children, they are not currently classified as either workers or employees.

The trade union said that foster care workers are exploited, have no rights whatsoever and are treated as a disposable workforce, when society needs carers more than ever.

A previous case heard by the Court of Appeal decided that foster carers could not be classified as workers, as the relationship between carers and their organisation is not based on a legal contract. According to figures cited by charity The Fostering Network, there are almost 55,000 foster families across the UK, caring for nearly 64,000 children.

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