Employment law stories in the news – 27.07.2015 to 02.08.2015

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 27 July 2015 and 2 August 2015

  1. Gillingham and chairman Paul Scally fined £75,000 for ‘race victimisation’ – Gillingham and their chairman, Paul Scally, have each been fined £75,000 for “race victimisation” relating to the departure of the striker Mark McCammon in 2011. McCammon spent three years with Gillingham, and an employment tribunal in Ashford had previously ruled his departure was because of racial discrimination. McCammon claimed the club refused him treatment for an injury and docked his wages (The Guardian)
  2. EU Kosovo mission accused of trying to silence whistleblower – The European Union’s biggest foreign mission has been accused of using its powers to try to silence a whistleblower who claims to have uncovered evidence of possible corruption. Eulex, the foreign mission in Kosovo, is being taken to an employment tribunal by the London-based lawyer Maria Bamieh. She claims she was forced from her job as a prosecutor after exposing evidence of bribery among senior staff (The Guardian)
  3. Global Energy Firm fined £1.4m after worker killed in refinery fire – Total UK Limited have been fined £1.4 million after a major fire led to the death of a worker at an oil refinery in North Lincolnshire. Twenty-four year old Robert Greenacre from Grimsby was working near a crude oil distillation unit just before the fire broke out at the Lindsey Oil Refinery (TLOR) in Immingham on 29th June 2010 (HSE)
  4. NHS spends £1.8bn on staff redundancy pay-offs following Government restructuring – About £1.8bn has been spent on NHS staff redundancy pay-offs since the Government’s restructuring of the health service, according to new figures. More than 44,000 people have been laid off in the last five years with some 5,500 re-employed by the NHS in another job, Sky News reported (The Independent)
  5. Scaffolding firm fined after worker killed in fall – A Glasgow scaffolding firm has been fined after a roof worker fell nearly six metres to his death. James Baillie, 53, suffered serious head injuries after he fell through a scaffold tower deck whilst carrying out roof work at a two storey domestic property in Thorntonhall, South Lanarkshire on 22 September 2011. He died from his injuries the next day, on 23 September 2011 (HSE)
  6. Workers who fail to declare tips lose out on basic employment rights – Workers who receive regular tips but do not officially declare them are being warned that they risk losing out on basic employment rights. It follows the case of a former manager at Coia’s cafe in Glasgow whose unfair dismissal claim was thrown out because he and his bosses had an agreement where he did not declare all of his tips to Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (Herald Scotland)
  7. Uber facing legal action in UK over its workers’ rights – Uber is facing legal action in the UK from British drivers who claim the taxi-booking firm does not provide them with basic workers’ rights (BBC)
  8. Public sector workers ‘must have fluent English’ – People who do not speak fluent English will be barred from public sector jobs which involve working directly with the public, the government has said. From September, NHS staff and council workers will be among those required to have language skills equivalent to GCSE grade C or above
  9. Two-year anniversary of introduction of employment tribunal fees shows scheme has undermined access to justice – Employment tribunal cases have fallen by over 60 per cent in the two years since substantial charges were introduced for people wishing to bring a case against an employer, Ministry of Justice statistics reveal. Employment tribunal fees were intended to transfer costs of running the employment tribunal system to users and to encourage employers and employees to resolve disputes without going to tribunal (The Law Society)
  10. Jeremy Corbyn pledges 50% of Labour MPs will be women – Labour leadership contender Jeremy Corbyn today pledged to ensure that if elected, half of his shadow cabinet and half of his party’s MPs will be women. The Left-winger made the promise as he released his policy agenda for women, claiming he would ditch cuts to services they use (The Evening Standard)