Employment law stories in the news this week – 16.12.2013 to 22.12.2013

MoJIn the latest of our series of posts on employment law stories in the news this week, we take a look at 10 stories related to employment law that have made the news between 16 December and 22 December 2013. This includes a former chauffeur at Liverpool Football Club who has lost his Employment Tribunal claim, a new report issued by the British Heart Foundation which released figures on sickness absence in the UK, and Vince Cable on zero hour contracts

  1. Ex-Liverpool FC chauffeur claiming he was hounded out of job has case dismissed by tribunal – A former Liverpool FC chauffeur who claimed he was hounded out of his job after he made allegations of serious malpractice at the club has had his case dismissed after an employment  tribunal hearing (The Liverpool Echo)
  2. 650,000 UK staff off sick each week – Nearly 650,000 UK employees phone in sick every week, according to research by the British Heart Foundation (BHF). Its research, which analysed figures from the BHF’s Health at Work programme, found that the public administration and defence sector, which includes many public sector jobs, has the highest absence levels, with approximately 51,000 people not making it in to work in a typical week (Employee Benefits)
  3. BBC pay-offs: MPs condemn ‘cronyism’ – “Cronyism” at a “dysfunctional” BBC led to executives getting larger pay-offs than they deserved, MPs have said. In July it emerged the BBC paid £25m to 150 outgoing executives – £2m more than their contracts stipulated (BBC)
  4. Colchester Hospital University NHS Trust boss resigns amid bullying allegations – The chief executive of a hospital under police investigation over allegations that staff were bullied and pressured to falsify cancer waiting times has resigned (The Telegraph)
  5. One-in-five redundant NHS staff rehired – Thousands of NHS managers and other staff have been rehired by the health service after receiving payoffs – with more than 400 back on the payroll within weeks of taking redundancy, MPs have heard (The Telegraph)
  6. Council equal pay claim is rejected by panel – A mass legal action over equal pay claims by thousands of low-paid female workers at Scotland’s largest local authority has fallen at the first hurdle. The claim against Glasgow City Council by around 8000 workers was part of what has been called the second wave of equal pay and sought to challenge how the authority compared the salaries of female staff with males performing comparative roles (The Herald Scotland)
  7. Former lecturer makes suicide comment complaint against employment tribunal judge – An employment tribunal judge is being investigated for allegedly making a comment about suicide to a woman whose son had just taken his own life (The Courier)
  8. Senior City staff banking on large bonus payouts – Bonuses for the most senior City workers are expected to increase by 44% in 2013 despite pressure from shareholders and the public to scale back large bonus payouts, research from financial services firm Astbury Marsden has found (HR Magazine)
  9. Grandparents ‘should be allowed unpaid leave’ to look after grandchildren – Grandparents should be entitled to take unpaid leave from work because of the growing numbers looking after their grandchildren, a new report has urged (The Independent)
  10. Zero-hours contracts: Cable rules out complete ban – Business Secretary Vince Cable has ruled out a complete ban on zero-hours contracts, saying they offered employers “welcome flexibility”.Launching a consultation on their use, Mr Cable said the contracts had a place in the labour market even though there had been evidence of abuse of rights (BBC)