Employment law stories in the news – 12.05.2014 to 18.05.2014

MoJIn the latest of our series of posts on employment law stories in the news this week, we take a look at ten stories related to employment law that have made the news between 12 May and 18 May 2014.

  1. Stena Line docker wins homophobia unfair dismissal case – A Belfast dock worker sacked after reacting to homophobic abuse at work has been awarded £45,000 compensation. An industrial tribunal found Martin Sheil, 51, had been unfairly dismissed by Stena Line Irish Sea Ferries (BBC)
  2. Online producer suffering from bipolar disorder, Aspergers, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia battles BBC for disability discrimination – An online producer recruited by the BBC through a scheme to attract people with disabilities is suing for disability discrimination. Jayne Lutwyche, 29, who was sacked from the Learning department at the Religion and Ethics team at Salford Quays, suffers from bipolar disorder, Aspergers Syndrome, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia (The Manchester Evening News)
  3. High Court dismisses JR on unfair dismissal cap – The High Court has dismissed a request for a judicial review challenging the newly introduced cap of one year’s salary in compensation for unfair dismissal (The Law Society Gazette)
  4. Only 5% of employment tribunal fees waived – Just under a quarter (24%) of applications for remission of employment tribunal fees from 29 July to 31 December 2013 were accepted, a written answer in the House of Commons reveals. A total of 2,500 paper applications were received from individuals or groups of individuals requesting for fees to be levied, yet of those judged, only 600 were granted and 1,800 were rejected (WSB)
  5. MPs employ 151 people on controversial zero hours contractsincluding those ‘opposed’ to it -MPs are employing 151 people on controversial zero-hours contracts, Parliament’s pay and expenses watchdog has revealed. Scores of those casual arrangements are with Labour MPs, who have campaigned against the exploitation of workers not guaranteed a set wage or hours (The Mirror)
  6. Manchester United reveal massive pay-off for sacked boss David Moyes – Moyes and his backroom staff were shown the door after a dreadful season which ended with them finishing seventh. In a conference call to investors, chief executive Ed Woodward explained how the figure would be revealed in September but that it was expected “to be single-digit million pounds” (The Daily Star)
  7. Vince Cable: Give zero hours contract workers ‘right to request’ permanent jobs – People on zero hours contracts could be given a right to request a permanent fixed-hours deal under a plan announced by Vince Cable, the Liberal Democrat Business Secretary (The Independent)
  8. Only half of employees take all their holiday entitlement, finds poll – A poll of more than 2,000 UK adults has revealed that the average UK employee only uses three quarters (77 per cent) of their annual leave each year. The survey conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of workplace review website Glassdoor also found that only half of workers use up all of their holiday entitlement, while more than two-fifths admit to working while they are on leave (CIPD)
  9. Food giant Heinz sentenced after engineer’s life-changing injury – Global food producer Heinz was today (16 May) fined for serious safety failings after an engineer had his hand severed when it became trapped in live, unguarded machinery at its Norfolk plant. Alec ‘Alf’ Brackenbury, 49, from Bacton, Norfolk, was servicing a potato peeling machine at Heinz’s Westwick manufacturing plant in Station Road, Worstead, Norfolk, on the first day of a maintenance shutdown on 20 June 2013 (HSE)
  10. Mackay agrees settlement with Cardiff over sacking – Malky Mackay has dropped his legal claim against Cardiff having reached a settlement with the club. The Scot launched a fight for compensation after he was axed in December with two-and-a-half years still remaining on his contract (Talksport)