Employment law stories in the news – 15.09.2014 to 21.09.2014

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 15 September and 21 September 2014.

  1. Half of tribunal awards are not paid to workers – Figures show almost half the successful claimants in Scotland never get a penny, with a further 13 per cent receiving just part of what they are owed. The UK Parliament is currently considering a Bill introducing a penalty for employers who fail to pay, but the Law Society of Scotland has called for a full review of the system, including looking at ways to boost payment rates (The Herald Scotland)
  2. NHS whistleblowing ‘problems persist’ – Whistleblowers still face real problems in speaking out in the health service – despite the push to create a more open culture, campaigners say. Promoting whistleblowing was a key recommendation of the public inquiry into the Stafford Hospital scandal (BBC)
  3. Miliband Sets Out Plan For £8 Minimum Wage – Labour leader Ed Miliband has pledged to raise the national minimum wage to at least £8 an hour if he becomes Prime Minister. The minimum wage is due to rise from £6.31 an hour to £6.50 on October 1, but Mr Miliband plans to add £1.50 an hour on to that by 2020 (Sky News)
  4. Construction company fined £100,000 after worker run-over by nine tonne truck – A major construction company has been fined for safety failings after a worker was critically injured when he was run over by a nine tonne dumper truck. David Windsor, 62, of St George, Bristol, suffered life changing injuries, including severe brain injury, in the incident at a building site at Mount Wise, Devonport, on 7 October 2010 (HSE)
  5. Labour will ‘name and shame’ companies which don’t pay men and women equally – Companies would be “named and shamed” under a Labour Government to put pressure on them to close the pay gap between men and women. In an interview with The Independent, Gloria De Piero, the shadow Minister for Women and Equalities, said that Labour would legislate to force firms with more than 250 workers to publish the average pay of men and women at each pay grade (The Independent)
  6. One in four finance professionals experiences age discrimination – One-quarter of finance professionals have either experienced or witnessed age discrimination at work, according to research by eFinancialCareers.
    The eFinancialCareers Diversity Survey is based on a poll of 1,500 workers from the finance sector. It suggests exactly one-third of employees between 41 and 50-years-old have been discouraged from applying for a role on the grounds of their age (HR Vision)
  7. New judicial review into tribunal fees to be heard in High Court – UNISON will launch a new Judicial Review into the introduction of tribunal fees, following a hearing at the Court of Appeal today. Today the Lord Chancellor agreed with UNISON that a new hearing should take place as soon as possible, in light of new evidence (UNISON)
  8. Lawyers welcome employment tribunal plans – Lawyers have welcomed plans to shake-up the employment tribunal system. Speaking at the TUC Congress in Liverpool last week shadow business secretary Chuka Umunna announced that the next Labour government will replace the employment tribunal system with a fairer alternative to ensure affordability is not a barrier to employees seeking redress (The Liverpool Echo)
  9. G4S security guard was ‘sacked as scapegoat’ for anti-tax avoidance protest at HM Treasury offices – A security guard at HM Treasury was sacked as a “scapegoat” after anti-tax avoidance activists entered the building to stage a protest, an employment tribunal has ruled. Wilfred Onyia was on duty at the Treasury headquarters in central London last year when protesters gathered in the reception area wearing wearing straw boater hats and carrying champagne, balloons, flowers and cake (The Mirror)
  10. SW Global Resourcing Limited fined £200,000 – A Glasgow based company has pled guilty today at Kilmarnock Sheriff Court to a breach of the Health and Safety at Work Act which resulted in the death of an employee at the Annick Water Viaduct, Stewarton, Ayrshire, in 2010. SW Global Resourcing Limited pled guilty to contraventions of Sections 2 and 33(1) (a) of the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and were fined £200,000 (COPFS)