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“Thank Odin for that – another day off”

May 10, 2010

Pagan police officers can now take their days off to suit their religious festivals.

Times article

For many, many years, police officers below the rank of inspector (they sold out about 15 years ago – serves them right) have been entitled to pay at double time for working on Christmas Day, Good Friday, Easter Monday and other public holidays. This payment was made to officers regardless of the fact that they might be Christian, Hindu, Sikh, Jewish, Muslim or even – God forbid – atheists like me.

Now the Pagans are getting in on the act – playing the Diversity card to get their own religious days off. I don’t know whether they expect to get double bubble for working on Hallowe’en. Llamas or Beltane, but if they do, then it should be available to the rest of us as well.

I'm not a gas, I'm a Pagan god.
I’m Beltane – have a day off on me.

What will be next? Will the followers of Jedi be entitled to a religious festival of their own?

The main reason that religious holidays are so popular in the police is purely and simply the financial reward. Twice the pay for the same amount of work. I’m surprised that there isn’t a day off to celebrate Mammon!

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Matt permalink
    May 10, 2010 22:43

    I used to follow this very closely, as I used to be a practising Pagan (now I’m sort of indifferent). What it boiled down to in terms of general employment rights was the ability to have the festivals off work – not to get extra holiday for them, or have them considered to be bank holidays in terms of pay or anything like that. Just the right to have the time off work because it’s a festival at that time. Which, I think, boils down to work having to have a really good reason to deny you the holiday request. Obviously this was in the office world, the police or anybody who does shifts treat holidays differently anyway. But I guess it would cover who gets priority when too many people want the same day off? Not that you don’t know when they are, so you could book the whole year’s worth in advance… if your leave system allows it. can’t say I’d be surprised if it didn’t. Waffling now.

    If the police are really mucking about with double pay for Pagan Sabbats I’d definitely be scowling. Let people take holiday for it, sure. Paying them extra just makes people pretend to be the religion with the most holidays (and Pagans do get eight of them every year, with some particularly out of touch people arguing for thirteen Esbats as well – that’s full moons or new moons, depending on your variety of Paganism. This is of course ridiculous).

  2. Weary permalink
    May 11, 2010 01:27

    Hi,
    As a practising Pagan and a Police Officer i am more than happy to set the record straight. Pagans, like all other officers get a set number of Bank Holidays linked to religious festivals per year. Such as Christmas Day, Easter Monday and the like. Pagans, like Muslim and Jewish officers get the option to swap the bank holidays. So if I get 21st December off as BHL (Yule) then I work Christmas Day at the normal rate. If I work Yule and Christmas Day I get Christmas day at the normal rate. Basically I can swap 8 days (that we all get regardless) for another 8 days linked to my beliefs. I get no more money than a Christian, Muslim, Jew, atheist. In fact I am married to an atheist and he has no problems with me swapping the odd bank holiday here and there.
    It isn’t a question of getting more, just the same.

  3. Retired RAD permalink
    May 21, 2010 06:52

    I hope you’re just on holiday and haven’t given up blogging.
    Just because we don’t comment your blog, doesn’t mean we don’t read it.

  4. Matt permalink
    August 24, 2010 02:05

    I lol’d at “I’m Beltane, have a day off on me” and the picture.

  5. Jak permalink
    September 15, 2010 11:25

    Your religion with regards to your profession seems to be irrelevant,as its none of anyones business apart from your own,as long as you dont try evangelising all and sundry.
    So with regards to the profession of Police why not a ‘Peel Day’ or ‘UN Peacekeepers Day’?

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