To ask the Right Honourable Member for Meriden, representing the Church Commissioners, whether women in ministry with caring responsibilities are in receipt of their full stipend.
5 November 2018
The Church Commissioners do not have details of how many clergy have asked for time off or adjustments, or the level of support for caring for dependants and assistance with cover, as arrangements for this are best made locally – whether within the parish, or arranged with the assistance of the area dean or archdeacon.
Since office holders do not report on the number or arrangement of the hours they work in performance of their duties of office, it is not known how many clergy women (and men) take advantage of this flexibility to care for their dependants whilst holding full time offices and receiving full stipend.
All clergy (women and men) holding office on Common Tenure have a legal right to make a formal request for time off, or for adjustments to their duties of office, to care for a dependant. The latest statistics show that there were 330 women and 310 men in part-time stipendiary clergy roles at the end of 2017. It is likely that a full time stipendiary office holder who makes a request for their duties of office to be permanently adjusted to part-time in order to care for a dependant would receive a corresponding reduction in stipend. The decision as to whether an office holder receives full stipend during any formally requested time off to care for a dependant is made by the bishop on a case by case basis. The Bishop may grant special leave (usually on compassionate grounds)during which office holders usually receive their full stipend.