December 2017 Bumper Edition Bah the HR Humbug!-Cherington HR

As we approach the festive season, you will probably find stories doing the rounds on social media about those strict people in HR who will not let people enjoy themselves at the work Christmas party. It is a bit like the apocryphal H&S stories about games being banned at school.

No I do not want to ban Christmas parties, but I do want employers to ensure that they think carefully to make sure that employees are not excluded in any way, if they wish to join the celebrations. With the recent revelations in the media about various individuals who are alleged to have harassed or assaulted colleagues it is even more important to get it right and avoid your business being implicated as the result of any complaints. See my blog on the sort of things you may need to consider to ensure that your party is remembered for the right reasons! Read more.

In this bumper edition of the newsletter you will find updates that may be of interest relating to general employment law issues.

If you have any queries about any of these items or would like to discuss a people management problem you are struggling with at the moment please don’t hesitate to get in touch.

Harassment in the news: The potential for more complaints

With the reports of historical harassment in Hollywood and now Parliament, employees may feel increasingly able to come forward with such claims in the workplace. It will therefore be a good idea to make sure that you know what to do if one of your employees makes a complaint. Read more

A tall tale! Can minimum height requirements be discriminatory?

Those of you who know me personally, will be aware that being “vertically challenged” at 1.52 m tall, I would be interested in this particular case from Greece. It looked at the minimum height requirements being imposed by the Greek Police for recruitment to the force, but the findings have wider implications for any employer recruiting new staff.

The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) had to consider whether it was indirectly discriminatory to require both men and women to be at least 1.70m tall – and if it was, whether this could be objectively justified, which, under the Equal Treatment Directive, means ‘objective and necessary’. Read more

Uber and Out?

Regular readers will be aware of the long-running case by some taxi drivers against Uber. Uber has now lost its appeal against a ruling that its drivers are ‘workers’, in the keenly awaited judgment that was handed down by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) on the 10th November.
As a consequence legal experts are advising organisations operating “gig economy”-type models to ensure their contracts are watertight. Read more

Deliveroo Riders: Oh yes, they are… oh no, they’re not!

You may be forgiven for thinking that all the decisions regarding “gig economy” worker status were going in favour of the workers, but barely was the ink dry on my article about the recent Uber decision than another judgment appeared on the 14th November with regards to Deliveroo. However, this time it came from a rather unusual direction and had a very different outcome. Read more

Returning mothers: The discrimination risk of getting your assessment wrong!

A recent case before the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) heard a complaint from a nurse working in a hospital’s accident and emergency unit. She had returned to work following her maternity leave and claimed that she had been discriminated against because the risk assessment done with respect to her as a breastfeeding worker had not complied with an EU directive that was intended to improve the health and safety of pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. Read more

Brexit: Reassuring your EU staff

The big question for employers in the UK who have EU nationals on their staff is what will happen after Brexit? Will they be allowed to stay and work? The lack of clarity about that so far has been worrying for employers and employees alike. However, some answers may now be starting to appear. Read more

Keeping up to date

I’ll be posting news on relevant employment matters as they occur here.
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