Bank improves family support package

HSBC is to offer all its workers nursery places and childcare vouchers for children up to the age of 16.

The bank said it will double the number of workplace nurseries it provides to at least 170.

HSBC claims it is the first company in the UK to make such an offer. It will apply to all its 57,000 staff, including those working for the 24-hour banking service First Direct.

About half of the bank’s workers have children under the age of 16. Under the scheme workers will be able to choose nursery places or childcare vouchers, or both, instead of salary.

The bank said the scheme will be exempt from tax and national insurance payments, which will save workers money. It claims the arrangement amounts to a 6.5% pay rise.

Sue Jex, head of employee support, said: “The new voucher scheme will not only allow more parents and carers access to subsidised childcare, but is flexible.

“Because vouchers also cover care for youngsters up to 16, the benefits go on for much longer.”

Last week, employees represented by the Amicus union were balloted on industrial action over a pay dispute at the bank.

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