Employment law stories in the news – 16.06.2014 to 22.06.2014

MoJIn the latest of our series of posts on employment law stories in the news this week, we take a look at ten employment law stories that have made the news between 16 June and 22 June 2014.

  1. ‘Conscience clause’ could protect Christian workers, says top judge – A “conscience clause” protecting Christians and others whose beliefs on issues such as homosexuality clash with their jobs should be considered to help resolve disputes over religious freedom, Britain’s top female judge has suggested (The Telegraph)
  2. Sacked employee wins in Yellow Pages case – A former salesman for Yellow Pages has been awarded almost £14,000 after being unfairly dismissed -despite having received two written final warnings. John Campbell won his case at an employment tribunal in Glasgow after a judge ruled his employers had not taken into account his ill health (Herald Scotland)
  3. Hundreds of thousands of care workers are paid less than the minimum wage – Local government conference heard today of the “stark results” of £1bn of cuts from social care budgets under the coalition government – and of UNISON’s fight to defend its members and those in their care (UNISON)
  4. Job applicants do not need to disclose childhood offences, supreme court rules – Human rights and privacy campaigners have welcomed a supreme court ruling that job applicants do not need to disclose convictions for childhood offences or for other minor offences when they go through criminal record checks (The Guardian)
  5. Carlisle firm in court after trainee scaffolder injured in fall – A Carlisle scaffolding firm has been fined £15,000 after an employee was seriously injured when he fell more than six metres through a roof light. Contract Scaffolding Services Limited was prosecuted by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) following the incident at a factory in Dalston, Cumbria, on 22 February 2013 (HSE)
  6. Sacked gran who revealed golf club ‘affair’ gets £50,000 payout – An employment tribunal judge ruled there had been a “witch hunt” against Margaret Chadwick. The grandmother was suspended as assistant secretary after raising concerns about secretary Bill Beckett, 69, and a woman at Aldeburgh Golf Club, ­Suffolk (The Express)
  7. Docking pay for failing to give full notice can be permissible – The EAT has upheld the employment tribunal’s decision that it was not an unenforceable penalty clause to make the employee liable to pay the employer a sum equivalent to the wages she would have earned during the unworked portion of her notice period (Lexology)
  8. Eversheds says employment tribunal figures might mean government rethink fees regime – Eversheds partner Geoffrey Mead has commented on statistics published by the UK Ministry of Justice, which confirm a sustained reduction in the number of employment tribunal claims lodged since the fees regime was introduced last year (The Lawyer)
  9. Target MPs over pay – nurse leader – Nurses should target MPs in marginal seats to turn up the pressure over pay, the Royal College of Nursing says. Ministers have blocked a recommendation for a 1% across-the-board rise for health staff in England (BBC)
  10. Doctors ‘only looked for evidence of guilt’ – An employment tribunal investigating the case of a surgeon who was sacked by Oxford University Hospitals Trust has been brought to a close. The lawyer representing the surgeon, who was sacked after being accused of sexually harassing two female junior doctors, gave his closing statements to the tribunal, held at Reading, on Monday (Banbury Guardian)