Title

Autem vel eum iriure dolor in hendrerit in vulputate velit esse molestie consequat, vel illum dolore eu feugiat nulla facilisis at vero eros et dolore feugait

Tag Archive

3 Things We Learnt In Law This Week (24 January 2019)

Tribunal Awards NHS Manager £1m In Racial Discrimination Case

A former NHS trust manager who was unfairly dismissed and suffered racial discrimination has been awarded a reported £1 million by London South Employment Tribunal.

Richard Hastings, an IT manager at King’s College NHS Foundation Trust, was dismissed for gross misconduct in October 2015 after he was accused of assault following a dispute with a van driver in his workplace car park.

Read More

The Do’s and Don’ts When Handling A Bullying Grievance

Allegations of workplace bullying are difficult for an employer to deal with because bullying can be hard to recognise and define. In this article we look at how employers can best handle a bullying grievance.

What does someone mean when they say they are “being bullied”? It’s something which is very much in the eye of the beholder – one person’s robust management style is another’s bullying, and the employer faces the unenviable task of adjudicating where the line between acceptable and unacceptable behaviour lies. While most people will agree what constitutes bullying in extreme cases, there is a grey area in the middle which may cause more debate.

Read More

3 Things We Learnt In Law This Week (17 January 2019)

Disabled Shop Worker Wins Tribunal Award From M&S Over Lift Key

An Employment Tribunal (ET) has made an award of £1,000 against Marks and Spencer after a delay in providing a disabled shop worker with a lift key to allow him to reach the toilets more easily.

Read More

3 Things We Learnt In Law This Week (3 January 2019)

UK Government Annouces New Code Of Practice To Tackle Workplace Sexual Harassment 

A new statutory Code of Practice will be developed by the Equality and Human Rights Commission in order to guide employers on their legal responsibilities regarding sexual harassment in the workplace. This was one of 12 actions recently announced by the UK government as it makes confronting workplace harassment a priority.

The announcements are in response to the July 2018 recommendations of the UK Women and Equalities Committee, which called for (1) putting sexual harassment at the top of the UK government’s agenda; (2) requiring regulators to take a more active role in tackling harassment; (3) making enforcement processes work better for employees by setting them out in the Code; (4) cleaning up the use of nondisclosure agreements (NDAs) used in employment contracts and settlement agreements; and (5) collecting robust data on sexual harassment in the workplace at regular intervals.

Read More

3 Things We Learnt In Law This Week (27 December 2018)

Does an Employee Have a Right to a Statement of Employment Particulars When Employed for Less Than 2 Months?

Yes, if they have worked continuously for at least 1 month, held the EAT in Stefanko and others v Maritime Hotel Ltd.

Read More

Samira Cakali Qualifies as a Mental Health First Aider

In August our Samira Cakali qualified as a Mental Health First Aider (‘MHFA’). In this article she discusses the scheme and how having a Mental Health First Aider could vastly improve your business and have a positive impact on the amount of disability claims that land on your desk. 

Why is mental health awareness in the workplace so important?

Mental ill health is the biggest reason for sickness absence and by far the largest cost to employers across the UK. Investing in staff wellbeing saves money in the long run – workplaces that prioritise mental health have more engaged, productive and loyal employees, who are less likely to need time off sick. 

What does the training involve?

MHFA is a two-day training course. The course is based around a five-step action plan for providing first aid to those suffering with their mental health. The course instructor educates the attendees on a variety of areas of mental health, how to spot the early signs of an issue and shows them how to apply the action plan in each case, which includes preserving life and guiding someone to appropriate sources of help. Areas that are covered are those such as: depression; suicide; substance misuse; anxiety; self-harm; eating disorders; personality disorders; and psychosis. 

What do businesses stand to gain from having a mental health first aider?

Both employers and employees stand to gain significantly from organisations having mental health first aiders. Training in MHFA will give employers the confidence to have these conversations, listen to their employees and therefore be able to understand how their employees feel and what support they need. When employees feel supported and able to discuss their concerns, they will feel better-able to continue to attend work and therefore sickness absence levels are likely to reduce. 

Are claims less likely if you are a MHFA?

The Equality Act 2010 (‘the Act’) places an obligation on employers to make reasonable adjustments for employees who are suffering from a disability under the Act. A mental health condition amounts to a disability under the Act if it has a substantial and long-term adverse effect on the employee’s ability to carry out normal day to day activities. If an employer fails to make reasonable adjustments, it risks facing a disability discrimination claim. 

A MHFA-trained employer will be better able to have conversations with employees suffering from mental health conditions. This in turn will enable the employer and employee to work together to ascertain what reasonable adjustments can be put into place to assist the employee. If the employee subsequently issues a claim for an alleged failure to make reasonable adjustments, the employer will then stand a far greater chance of being able to defend such a claim. However, if an employee feels supported, they are also less likely to issue a claim in the first place.

Further details about MHFA training can be found at www.mhfaengland.org

If you need help and advice regarding mental health in the workplace, please do not hesitate to contact Samira or the employment team on 01133 50 40 30 or at samira.cakali@scesolicitors.co.uk

If you enjoyed this article and would like to be kepy updated on Employment Law & HR, Commercial Litigation and Data Protection issues, please subscribe to our monthly newsletter

SCE Solicitors Celebrates Manchester Gay Pride

Having lived in Manchester for a long time, I know that Manchester Pride is a huge event for me and the rest of the Manchester LGBT community.  So, to celebrate the upcoming festivities we here at SCE Solicitors celebrated our own diversity with a ‘pride party’. We pride ourselves on being a diverse team, despite our size, and we encourage others to do the same.

Having a diverse workforce is a commercial no-brainer. It allows businesses to use people’s different backgrounds, knowledge, skills and expertise to create an environment where employees can learn from each other and produce innovative ideas. Employees will also feel valued and supported, which increases their productivity. Workplace diversity builds a good reputation for any business. Being known for being fair and diverse is likely to attract a wider pool of applicants for any vacancies and will attract loyalty from the socially conscious.

It also encourages a mutual respect for others, which is vital to protect against claims of discrimination. The Equality Act 2010 protects those who have one or more of the 9 protected characteristics from discrimination. The protected characteristics are; age, disability, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity, race, religion or belief, sex and sexual orientation. Even if you, as an employer, do not yourself discriminate against the protected employee, you can still be held liable for an employee’s conduct if you cannot show that you have done everything in your power to prevent such behaviour. Therefore, it is imperative that employers have effective Equal Opportunities and Diversity policies, staff and management training, and a zero-tolerance approach when dealing with acts of discrimination.

If you are an employer or an individual and you have questions about diversity and discrimination in the workplace contact me at eve.king@scesolicitors.co.uk or call 01133 50 40 30.

Manchester Gay Pride begins today, Friday 24 August 2018, and ends on Monday 27 August 2018. 


SCE Solicitors is a boutique employment law practice based in Leeds which advises clients nationwide.  Please note that the information in this blog is to provide information of general interest in a summary manner and should not be construed as individual legal advice. Readers should consult with SCE Solicitors or other professional counsel before acting on the information contained here.

If you enjoyed this article and would like to be kept updated on HR and Employment Law issues, please subscribe to our monthly newsletter

What “Positive Action” is Permitted Under Discrimination Legislation?

A key difference between positive action and positive discrimination is that positive action is lawful, provided that the employer meets the conditions set out in section 158 or 159 of the Equality Act 2010, whereas positive discrimination, generally, is not lawful.

In the context of recruitment, unlawful positive discrimination would be where an employer recruits a person because he or she has a relevant protected characteristic rather than because he or she is the best candidate. It is also unlawful, for example, to set quotas to recruit or promote a specific number or proportion of people with a particular protected characteristic. However, there are circumstances in which it is lawful to require a job applicant to have a particular protected characteristic, for example where an occupational requirement applies.

Read More

LEGAL UPDATE: Failure to Provide Enhanced Share Parental Pay is NOT Sex Discrimination

The Employment Appeal Tribunal (“EAT”) has decided that failure to pay a male employee enhanced shared parental pay, in circumstances where it paid enhanced pay to women on maternity leave, was not direct sex discrimination.  

Read More