Lying employer shifts burden of proof in discrimination claim.

I have been tempted in the past to establish a 'hall of shame' feature on the blog to highlight the depths some employers will go in their treatment of employees based on public decisions of their conduct in caselaw. If I were ever to do so Base Childrenswear Ltd would surely stake a claim for … Continue reading Lying employer shifts burden of proof in discrimination claim.

PCS members re-elect Mark Serwotka as General Secretary

At midday today the ballot of union members for PCS Union's General Secretary election closed. I am pleased to say that votes have now been counted and the results have been published with the declaration that Mark Serwotka, the incumbent, has been re-elected as the union's General Secretary for a five year term. With the … Continue reading PCS members re-elect Mark Serwotka as General Secretary

Recruitment agency discriminates against Sikh job applicant – how indirect discrimination works

The Central London Employment Tribunal have recently found in Sethi v Elements Personnel Service Ltd that a recruitment agency indirectly discriminated against Mr Sethi  for reasons related to his religion. Mr Sethi is an adherent of the Sikh faith. Reading the judgment it is abundantly clear why that decision was made, it is one of … Continue reading Recruitment agency discriminates against Sikh job applicant – how indirect discrimination works

Whirlpool workers secure 13.75% pay rise after threat of strike action

Workers in the Whirpool factory in Bristol have just secured a 13.75% payrise as the company gave into demands from Unite union in advance of a planned strike on 12 December. Prior to the threat of strike action Whirlpool had only been willing to offer a 1.25% raise for workers who were already low paid. … Continue reading Whirlpool workers secure 13.75% pay rise after threat of strike action

The mind of the decider (2): The effect of Jhuti

The Supreme Court's long awaited decision in Jhuti has now been delivered which is one all employee reps would do well to be aware of. The legal issue which the judgement addresses was surveyed a few weeks ago in which I expressed hope that the Court of Appeal's decision in Orr would be overruled. To recap, under … Continue reading The mind of the decider (2): The effect of Jhuti

Fixed term employee dismissals

If the Fixed Term Worker Directive, the EU law that provides for employment protection for fixed term workers, is to be believed "contracts of an indefinite duration are, and will continue to be, the general form of employment relationship between employers and workers." I have to say I have some scepticism of that statement and … Continue reading Fixed term employee dismissals

UK academics declare Labour’s employment law reforms offer “a credible plan of action.”

Over 50 employment Law specialists in the UK have written a open letter on the Labour Party's employment law plans, which offer the most comprehensive extension of employment protections for workers in living memory,  to be "a credible plan of action." The full text of the letter, published on 6 December 2019, reads: "Britain’s labour … Continue reading UK academics declare Labour’s employment law reforms offer “a credible plan of action.”

The return of Efobi? The burden of proof in discrimination claims.

In February I made reference to the unfortunate decision of the Court of Appeal in Royal Mail Group Ltd v Efobi [2019] IRLR 352 to overturn the Employment Appeal Tribunal's earlier interpretation of section 136 of the Equality Act 2010 that made it easier decision to establish that the burden of proof at which a … Continue reading The return of Efobi? The burden of proof in discrimination claims.

PCS union launches legal action against Home Office over check-off removal

Earlier this year PCS successfully concluded a protracted indirect discrimination legal claim on behalf of members. That claim, which that went all the way to the Supreme Court, resulted in more than £1 million compensation being awarded to members within the department who alleged they had been discriminated against. It has just been announced that … Continue reading PCS union launches legal action against Home Office over check-off removal

On Labour Manifesto Commitments and Hash Brown Related Dismissals

Section 94 of the Employment Rights Act 1996, if read in isolation, gives a very valuable right to all employees - the right not to be unfairly dismissed. However, by a series of qualifications what sounds a universal right is in fact only of benefit to a smaller percentage of employees. The Labour Party Manifesto … Continue reading On Labour Manifesto Commitments and Hash Brown Related Dismissals

IWGB secure important judgment on TUPE and Workers

For union representatives in PCS, which has a majority membership of civil servants, there is limited need to be aware of the protections provided by the Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of Employment) Regulations 2006, or TUPE as it is more commonly called. But for union representatives more generally this is a key area upon which … Continue reading IWGB secure important judgment on TUPE and Workers

The Mind of the Decider (1): The case of Orr

In 2005 Mr Orr, a Black Jamaican youth worker, was dismissed by Milton Keynes Council for misconduct. He was dismissed by a Mr Cove who heard the case against Mr Orr, and at which Mr Orr was not present. Mr Cove conducted the disciplinary hearing in good faith and, as noted, this resulted in Mr … Continue reading The Mind of the Decider (1): The case of Orr

Deferring disciplinary and grievance hearings beyond five working days – Talon v Smith

The ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures has been pretty much constant for a number of years. Personally I think that is a shame as I find it decidedly lacking in vision, and little more than a checklist of what to avoid to prevent a grossly prejudicial decision; less a roadmap to … Continue reading Deferring disciplinary and grievance hearings beyond five working days – Talon v Smith

Failure to investigate misconduct before dismissing employee was not unfair

The recent Employment Appeal decision in Radia v Jefferies International Ltd is a good case study in how established 'fair process' norms will not always render a dismissal unfair. Somewhat unusually since I tend to be critical of such deviation in this case it strike me that the decision is a reasonable one and that … Continue reading Failure to investigate misconduct before dismissing employee was not unfair

Now you see it, now you don’t: the strange case of the vanishing dismissal (or possibly not).

When someone is dismissed from their employment for misconduct the ACAS Code of Practice states that the employer should allow the opportunity to appeal and, in most cases, the employee will be seeking for the dismissal to be overturned and to be reinstated to their formal role. The Code also requires that that appeal and … Continue reading Now you see it, now you don’t: the strange case of the vanishing dismissal (or possibly not).

Removal of a disability related adjustment amounts to a failure to make an adjustment

An employer is obligated to make disability related reasonable adjustments in connection to work if an arrangement of an employer places the disabled employer at a substantial disadvantage. This is commonly referred to as the duty to make reasonable adjustments and is set out in section 20 of the Equality Act 2010. In the context … Continue reading Removal of a disability related adjustment amounts to a failure to make an adjustment

PCS General Secretary election due to start in November

On 7 November 2019 union members in the PCS will begin voting to decide who will be be the General Secretary of the union for the next five years. Under union rules a candidate must have a minimum of 15 branch nominations in order to make it onto the national ballot, three candidates met this … Continue reading PCS General Secretary election due to start in November

Disability and Issue Estoppel

In responses to employment tribunal claims it is sometimes argued that a tribunal does not have jurisdiction to hear the complaint because the tribunal is 'estopped' (prohibited) from deciding an issue because it has already been decided by the Tribunal. This can occur when a claimant has previously made an employment tribunal claim. The basic … Continue reading Disability and Issue Estoppel

When is it unfair to follow a grievance policy?

Many employer grievance policies have a two stage process process requiring an employee to seek to informally resolve a grievance before it is registered as a formal grievance. Sometimes, as was the case in GMB v Brown [2007] the employer, a trade union, has a three stage process: Stage 1 - Informal resolution with line manager … Continue reading When is it unfair to follow a grievance policy?