Employment law stories in the news – 31.10.2016 to 06.11.2016

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 31 October and 6 November 2016

  1. Military officials accused of using Stasi-like tactics against ‘whistleblower’ – Military officials used Stasi-like tactics to try to “sink” a “whistleblowing” army doctor by suggesting that his opposition to the Iraq war made him a dangerous influence, a tribunal has heard. Dr Stephen Frost was sacked by the Ministry of Defence with no notice and no explanation in September 2013 after an incident in which a pharmacist wrongly dispensed super-strength morphine to a veteran of the war in Afghanistan (The Guardian)
  2. Packaging firm fined over safety breaches – A packaging company has been fined after a worker’s thumb was severed due to the company’s failure to take adequate measures to prevent access to dangerous parts of machinery (HSE)
  3. Uber drivers win key employment case – Uber drivers have won the right to be classed as workers rather than self-employed. The ruling by a London employment tribunal means drivers for the ride-hailing app will be entitled to holiday pay, paid rest breaks and the national minimum wage (BBC)
  4. Whistleblowing judge told she was not an MoJ employee – A district judge who went public with her concerns about the justice system has been told she cannot be afforded protections as a whistleblower. The Employment Appeal Tribunal this week ruled that Claire Gilham (pictured) was an office-holder and did not work under a contract of employment with the Ministry of Justice (The Law Society Gazette)
  5. Worker dies when temporary platform collapses – A worker died and two others were badly injured at a construction site in Putney, when a temporary platform collapsed. Southwark Crown Court heard how, on 29 October 2012, a carpenter and a steel-fixer had been standing on a temporary wooden platform above a stairwell opening on the 9th floor of a construction site when the platform suddenly gave way beneath them (HSE)
  6. City boss sues for £1m over claims of ‘unrelenting’ homophobic abuse – A gay asset manager who claims he was sacked by a top City hedge fund after an “unrelenting” campaign of homophobic abuse is suing his former bosses for more than £1 million (The Evening Standard)
  7. Electronic voting review launches for trade union ballots – Electronic voting could become a reality in industrial action ballots, after the government announced an independent review of the technology. The review will examine possible risks, such as hacking or fraud, as well as potential impact on cases of intimidation of union members (BBC)
  8. Council ordered to pay £180K to disabled teacher sacked by York school – York council has been ordered to pay £180,000 to a teacher after a tribunal ruled that he had been discriminated against because he was disabled. Philip Grosset, who was sacked as head of English at Joseph Rowntree School, says the decision ends three “gruelling, stressful” years of fighting for his rights against both the school and the council (The York Mix)
  9. Nadeem Saddique secures £450,000 Cleveland Police payout – A policeman who was victimised by fellow officers because he is Asian has won £457,664 in compensation from Cleveland Police. Last November a tribunal found firearms officer Nadeem Saddique had been discriminated against (BBC)
  10. Workers priced out of discrimination claims, says TUC – Thousands of workers are being priced out of challenging discrimination or unfair dismissal, according to a trade union body. Fewer people are taking claims to an employment tribunal because of fees of up to £1,200, the TUC said (BBC)