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Dad wins right to change working hours for childcare reasons
thinkSPAIN , Sunday, April 17, 2011

A DAD who has spent eight years fighting for his working hours to be changed so he could care for his children has finally won his case.

Germán H, who works for a special education centre in Palencia – which falls under the jurisdiction of Castilla y León's regional education authorities – has been trying to persuade his employers to let him work the night shift rather than rotating shifts, since this would allow him to look after his children.

After continuously losing his cases against his employers, he eventually appealed to the Constitutional Court, which found that under Article 14 of the Spanish Constitution, everyone is considered equal and there may be no discrimination on the grounds of 'birth, sex, religion or any other personal or social condition or circumstance'.

For this reason, the judge considered that the employee could not be discriminated against for his family circumstances.

He says he is 'satisfied' now he has received a favourable verdict, 'if this helps future families in the same situation', but adds that his victory is a hollow one.

“It's a battle won, but a moral battle now,” he explains, saying that he will never get back the eight years of his children's lives that he would have enjoyed if justice had been done in the first place.

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