Family Friendly Policy
The Future Leaders Fellows Development Network Family Friendly Policy
Version 4 – Nov 2022
Purpose and scope
- This policy is intended to ensure that where a Fellow would be prevented from participating in a Development Network activity owing to caring responsibilities, appropriate arrangements can be put in place to enable the Fellow’s participation.
- Caring responsibilities may cover children or infants, elderly or disabled people, or other dependents.
- If you are registered for a one-day in-person event and you need to bring your dependent(s) and a nominated carer with you in order to enable your participation, then we are happy to reimburse travel and subsistence costs. These should follow the UKRI Travel & Subsistence policy (see link below).
- If you are registered for an event with a residential element and you need to bring dependent(s) and a nominated carer to stay with you at the venue in order to enable your participation, then we will book suitable accommodation on your behalf. Please notify us of what you will need. You can then book and reclaim travel expenses in the normal way.
- For the purposes of this policy, we define ‘carer’ as any responsible individual to whom the Fellow entrusts the care of their dependent(s) whilst participating in a given Network activity. The decision as to who is an appropriate carer must in all cases be made by the Fellow; the Development Network cannot offer advice, source qualified carers, or accept any liability.
- When you sign up for an in-person event, you commit to participate fully in all elements of the programme. In turn, we commit that our programmes will include sufficient break times for you to check in with any people whom you have brought with you. Please refer to individual events for details of start/finish times, etc. Dependents and nominated carers will be welcome to join coffee breaks and mealtimes.
- Please give us as much notice as possible of your caring needs for residential programmes and, ideally, no less than one week’s notice. But, in case of unexpected changes or emergencies, please do contact us. We will do our best to help and may be able to arrange or adjust accommodation at the last minute.
- If you would prefer to arrange additional care at your location or in the vicinity of the event (i.e. rather than bringing dependent(s) and a nominated carer to the venue with you), we will reimburse reasonable costs for this. Please identify the support which you think will be needed and notify us of the proposed cost in advance. We are unable to source qualified carers for you or offer suggestions in this regard.
- Any dependent(s) and your nominated carer can reclaim subsistence (e.g. meals) whilst you are attending the event, provided that these are in line with UKRI’s standard guidelines [see link below]. We cannot reimburse costs for activities or entertainment.
- The above are suggestions only and are not intended to be exhaustive. We encourage you to contact us with any suggestions to facilitate your participation in Network events.
Costs and reclaiming expenses
- All travel and subsistence expenses must be consistent with UKRI’s standard guidelines [see link below].
- Please keep in touch with us about your needs prior to booking anything or making any payments. Costs will need to have been pre-authorised by our team in order for you to reclaim any expenses incurred, i.e. before you make any payment. We cannot guarantee that expenses not authorised in advance will be able to be reimbursed, but we will take into account all circumstances (such as unanticipated needs or emergencies).
- We do not have pre-set guidelines or limits on what constitutes ‘reasonable’ costs. We understand that everyone’s individual circumstances will be different, and we will always endeavour to be guided by each Fellow’s judgement as to what is needed.
- Our approach will be to reimburse expenses you have incurred, i.e. we cannot directly pay invoices on your behalf. The exception is accommodation for residential events – see above.
- You can claim for an expense as soon as you have incurred it, in order to minimise any period when you are out of pocket. For example: if you book train tickets in advance and pay upfront, you do not need to wait until after you have travelled to reclaim the money. Please ensure that you confirm your arrangements are in line with UKRI’s standard guidelines prior to booking and if you are uncertain consult with our team for pre-authorisation.
- Please use the Expenses Claim Form we will send you as part of the event registration correspondence. Please keep copies of all tickets and receipts and submit these with your expense claim form.
Limitations to the policy
- The policy comes into effect when the Fellow would otherwise be prevented from participating in an activity. The policy must not be used to bring about a family break or holiday.
- Where we have concerns about abuse of the policy, we reserve the right not to reimburse expenses.
If you have further questions or would like to apply for support through this policy, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.