New ACAS discrimination guides:
ACAS has launched new practical advice to help employers identify, tackle and prevent discrimination in the workplace. The new Equality guides focus on:
Equality and Discrimination: understand the basics – outlines the fundamentals of what employers, employees and their representatives need to know to comply with Equality Law.
Preventing Discrimination: support equality – explains where discrimination is most likely to arise in the workplace and how to stop it happening.
Discrimination: what to do if it happens – a step-by-step guide covering how an employee should raise a complaint of discrimination and how an employer would handle it.
You can view the guides by following this link.
Employment Tribunal fees challenge rejected:
Unison have faced another setback in their attempt to have Employment Tribunal fees abolished. The Court of Appeal has rejected the union’s claim challenging the legality of Employment Tribunal fees introduced in 2013.
Lord Justice Underhill held that although he had a strong suspicion that the decline in tribunal cases may be attributed to the introduction of tribunal fees and must reflect at least some of the individuals not being able to afford the fees, the appeal could not succeed as there was no evidence of the actual affordability of the fees relating specifically to individuals’ particular financial circumstances (rather than notionally) or how typical cases of unaffordability may be, to enable the Court to form a reliable view that the fees payable under the regime would be realistically unaffordable in some cases.
Lord Justice Underhill also held that the provision of the remission system meant that it could not be said that the fee system in general was so unaffordable as to mean that there was no effective remedy under EU law. Unison have intimated that they intend to seek permission to appeal to the Supreme Court.
Interestingly however, the Scottish Government, in announcing their legislative programme for 2015-16 on 1 September indicated their intention to abolish employment tribunal fees to ensure that employees have a fair opportunity to have their case heard. This may see a rise in employment tribunal claims in Scotland and/or an element of “forum-shopping” from employees across the border who work for a UK wide company.
We will keep you updated as to any developments in relation to this.