Employment law stories in the news – 02.11.2015 to 08.11.2015

redmans-blog-newsIn the latest of our series of posts on employment law stories in the news, we take a look at ten employment law stories that have made headlines between 2 November and 8 November 2015

  1. Plastics Company fined after worker’s injury – A plastics company who engineer nylon products has been sentenced after an employee had his finger amputated as a result of an incident with a circular saw. The Health and Safety Executive (HSE), prosecuting, told Oldbury Magistrates’ Court the worker’s hand slipped into a moving circular saw causing damage to his knuckle resulting in amputation of his right forefinger below the second knuckle (HSE)
  2. Legal system changes ‘pricing out the poor’ says Llanelli MP – A raft of changes in the courts system are making justice something only available to the rich, according to Llanelli’s MP. As of April, anyone convicted in Magistrates Court faces an automatic charge of £150, or £180 for more serious offences, known as “Either Way” (Llanelli Star)
  3. NHS mental health trust admits whistleblower who spoke out about bullying acted in good faith – Britain’s largest mental health trust has been forced into a humiliating climb-down after finally admitting the whistleblower who spoke out about bullying and harassment of staff had acted in good faith and in the public interest (The Independent)
  4. Uber drivers in the UK sue to become employees – Uber drivers in the UK have filed an employee misclarification claim that seeks to change their status to employees of the company rather than self-employed contractors, BuzzFeed News reports. The claim follows similar motions in the US, where Uber is currently fighting multiple drivers on whether they are really employees or contractors. The latter has very few employee benefits, which drivers argue is unfair (UK Business Insider)
  5. Compass directors to appear before court over alleged false statements – Three directors of Compass Group, the FTSE 100 catering company, are to appear in court to answer fraud charges relating to how they dismissed an alleged whistleblower in 2013. Mark White, the group’s general counsel, Jane Kingston, its human resources director, and John Bason, a non-executive director who heads its audit committee, were handed on Tuesday summonses to appear at Milton Keynes magistrates court next month (The Guardian)
  6. Skip company and director fined after worker killed in excavator fall – West Sussex waste management firm South Coast Skips Ltd and its owner have been prosecuted after one worker died and another was left seriously injured when they fell from the bucket of an excavator (HSE)
  7. Large companies could face £20m fines for corporate manslaughter – Major companies convicted of corporate manslaughter will face fines of up to £20m under new sentencing guidelines. The guidelines, to be unveiled by the Sentencing Council on Tuesday, suggest that judges should impose fines in relation to the size of the convicted organisation. Under the Corporate Manslaughter and Homicide Act 2007, there is no upper limit on penalties. The £20m fine level will be for firms with an annual turnover of more than £50m, and up to £10m for fatal health and safety offences (The Guardian)
  8. Company alarm at order to publish gap in male and female pay – A government decision to force employers to disclose the pay difference between male and female staff is sending shivers through the boardrooms of corporate Britain, with some fearful of big lawsuits from female employees (Financial Times)
  9. UK firms must show proof they have no links to slave labour under new rules – British companies are to be forced to publish evidence on their websites that their operations are not reliant on international slavery, under legislation aimed at exposing details of supply chains to public scrutiny (The Guardian)
  10. Eva Carneiro to sue Jose Mourinho as well as Chelsea – Jose Mourinho is being personally sued by Eva Carneiro on top of the legal action she is taking against Chelsea over the loss of her job as the club’s first-team doctor. Carneiro is poised to heap pressure on the beleaguered Mourinho this week by serving papers on him which could force him to appear in person at an employment tribunal next year (The Telegraph)