Employment law cases in the news – 27.04.2015 to 03.05.2015

redmans-blog-newsIn the latest of our series of posts on employment law cases in the news, we examine ten employment law cases that made headlines between 27 April and 3 May 2015

  1. Polish worker “banned from speaking polish” takes north east firm to tribunal – A Polish fish factory worker has taken a north-east firm to an employment tribunal, claiming it is guilty of race discrimination. Magdalena Konieczna, 35, of Fraserburgh, was employed as a payroll administrator at Whitelink Seafoods from September 2012 until her dismissal last June (The Press and Journal)
  2. Court of Appeal to hear Judicial Review of unfair dismissal compensation cap – Compromise Agreements Ltd instigated a Judicial Review against the Government’s decision to introduce a statutory cap of 52 weeks’ pay for unfair dismissal compensation, i.e. it is the lower of 52 weeks’ gross pay or the statutory maximum cap in force at the time (currently £78,335) (The HR Director)
  3. Policeman wrongly accused of data protection breaches sues Police Scotland for £1m – A police officer wrongly accused of data protection breaches is suing Police Scotland for more than £1million. Constables Andrew Reid, 36, and former partner Amanda Daly, 34, were charged over claims they looked at police computer records after being attacked while off duty in 2009 (The Daily Record)
  4. Former Woolworths workers lose battle for compensation – Thousands of workers who lost their jobs when high street retailers Woolworths and Ethel Austin collapsed have lost a years-long battle for compensation. A decision by the European court of justice (ECJ) means that 3,200 ex-employees of Woolworths and 1,200 former staff at Ethel Austin will not receive any money (The Guardian)
  5. Worcester vicar loses unfair dismissal appeal – A vicar who claimed he was the victim of a four-year campaign of hate has lost his case at the Court of Appeal. The Reverend Mark Sharpe, of Hanley Broadheath, near Worcester, said he was seeking to claim for unfair dismissal after disturbances in 2009 (BBC)
  6. Supreme Court backs union in Stirling University staff row – Stirling University broke the law by letting fixed term staff go without consulting unions, the Supreme Court has ruled. A number of limited-term contracts were allowed to expire without renewal during university cutbacks in 2009 (BBC)
  7. Unite rep wins tribunal after being blacklisted over staff complaint of anti-Scouse prejudice – A union representative blacklisted by Interserve Industrial Services while working on the Runcorn incinerator has won his employment tribunal for unfair dismissal. John Kelly, of Unite, was not offered work when the construction team transferred to another project at Capenhurst (The Liverpool Echo)
  8. Police inspector who accused GMP of racial discrimination agrees out-of-court settlement – A black police inspector who took his bosses to an employment tribunal accusing them of racial discrimination has agreed an out-of-court settlement. Scott Winters has abandoned his case after reaching a private resolution with Greater Manchester Police (The Manchester Evening News)
  9. Pirelli Tyres sentenced after factory worker’s death – Tyre manufacturer Pirelli has been fined £150,000 after an employee died when he became trapped in an industrial autoclave for more than two hours. George Falder was found dead at the factory on Dalston Road in Carlisle on 30 September 2012 in a machine used to heat parts of tyres to temperatures of up to 145 degrees Celsius (HSE)
  10. RAF Fireman found guilty of stealing equipment and selling it on eBay – An RAF Lossiemouth firefighter sacked over allegations that he stole equipment and sold it online, yesterday lost his claim for unfair dismissal. Neil Humphries, 47, took his employers, the Ministry of Defence, to an employment tribunal claiming the allegations were untrue and they were wrong to fire him in July last year (Press and Journal)