Employment law stories in the news this week – 17.02.2014 to 23.02.2014

MoJIn the latest of our series of posts on employment law stories in the news this week, we take a look at ten stories related to employment law that have made the news between 17 February and 23 February 2014:

  1. Former clerk wins £72,000 from Ludlow Town Council in unfair dismissal case – Veronica Calderbank won a claim for unfair dismissal against the town council in December at the end of a month-long employment tribunal hearing in Birmingham. During the dispute Mrs Calderbank accused former council members of bullying and claimed she was left with no choice but to quit her role in June 2012, after being asked to work long hours without a break, despite a crippling back problem (The Shropshire Star)
  2. Senior Blackberry executive wins £400,000 payout over claims he was bullied by his bosses with personal insults and the silent treatment – A Blackberry mobile phone manager who claimed he was left feeling suicidal after being bullied by his bosses has won a £400,000 payout. Glen Hill, a former global strategic accounts manager who earned £88,000-a-year, claimed he was insulted before being subjected to ‘long silences’ (The Daily Mail)
  3. Tonbridge man sacked from Nizels golf club given £52k payout – A Tonbridge man sacked for being ‘too old’ has received a bumper payout. David Ells, 55, of Somerhill Road, was awarded £52,200 after he was fired from Nizels Golf Club in Hildenborough (The Courier)
  4. Tribunal rejects SRA appeal against sex discrimination ruling – The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) has lost its appeal against an employment tribunal decision that it discriminated against a female employee after revoking her part-time working agreement (Legal Futures)
  5. Senior North East bank worker claims she was told to ‘find another job’ – A senior bank worker from the North East who alleges a colleague spiked her drink is claiming compensation after being told to relocate or “find another job”. High-flying Barclays area director Miranda Mitchell won a tribunal for claims of suffering a detriment for whistle-blowing but has now suffered a setback after her employer won an appeal (The Journal)
  6. Early conciliation scheme details revealed by ACAS – Under reforms introduced by the Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act 2013, claimants wishing to bring proceedings in the employment tribunal from April will be required to attempt “Early Conciliation” (EC) through ACAS before they can do so (Lexology)
  7. MoJ vicariously liable for injury caused by prisoner’s negligence – In Cox v Ministry of Justice the Court of Appeal has ruled that the MoJ should be held vicariously liable for the injury caused to a staff member, who managed the catering department, by one of the prisoners, who worked in the kitchens. The prisoner in question was so much part of the work, business and organisation of the prison that it was just to make the MoJ answer for his negligence (ELAweb)
  8. Unpaid intern takes on British fashion house Alexander McQueen – The fashion house founded by the late designer Alexander McQueen is being sued by a former intern who worked unpaid for four months. Rachel Watson – not her real name but the one her lawyers want used – is claiming up to £6,415 in “lost wages” and says the fashion house broke the law by not paying her the national minimum wage (The Guardian)
  9. Firearms office whose gun was too big for her hands wins sex discrimination case – A firearms officer has won a sex discrimination case against nuclear police chiefs – because her gun was too big for her small hands. Victoria Wheatley, part of the armed unit which protects the Sellafield atomic complex, could not reach her weapon’s trigger. She struggled with the grip of the pistol she was using – a Glock 17 – and her trainers failed to adjust it while carrying out a test shoot on which her job depends (News and Star)
  10. Illegal employment did not preclude harassment claim – In Wijesundera v Heathrow 3PL Logistics Ltd the EAT has held that a Sri Lankan national who was working without a work permit was nonetheless able to bring a claim of harassment. The incidents of which she complained were not so inextricably linked with her employment that the illegality of that employment should deprive her of a remedy (ELAweb)