Flexi-hours for more British parents

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London, May 10 (UNI) More British parents will gain the right to demand flexible working hours under proposals to be unveiled by Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

The Prime Minister will signal this week a major extension in the right to part-time working as part of attempts to fight back from his ruling Labour Party's disastrous local elections showing, the Daily Telegraph reported.

Flexible working can currently be requested by those whose children were aged under six or disabled.

The government plans to at least double the age limit so as to include some 2.6 million more parents in the statutory right.

A review by Imelda Walsh, human resources director at J Sainsbury, the supermarket group, will lead ministers to signal the change and announce a full consultation on the proposals.

However, some employers were concerned about the burden on business by the extension of the right.

The EEF manufacturers' group said, ''It seems to us wrong that employers are the only people expected to make any accommodation for the work-life balance issue.'' UNI XC SKB HS1720

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