Category Archives: Discrimination

Non-Disclosure Agreements and Confidentiality in Settlement Agreements

Government response to report on Non-Disclosure Agreements We reported in our newsletter on 17 June 2019 about the recommendations made by the Women and Equalities Committee of the House of Commons on the use of confidentiality clauses or Non-Disclosure Agreements in workplace discrimination and harassment cases.   The Government has now published its response to the […]

Is it discrimination to reject a job applicant based on a perception that the condition may become a disability?

We reported in January 2018 last year about the case of The Chief Constable of Norfolk v. Coffey [2017] UKEAT,  where the Norfolk Constabulary was found by the Employment Appeal Tribunal to have directly discriminated against a non-disabled job applicant by not offering her a job because they perceived her condition could become a disability […]

The use of non-disclosure agreements in discrimination cases

A new report has been published on the use of non-disclosure agreements in discrimination cases Over the past couple of years there has been a great deal in the news regarding sexual harassment in the workplace, the “me too” movement that followed and revelations of cover ups by high profile figures.  This continues to be […]

Are climate change and veganism philosophical beliefs?

Philosophical belief under the Equality Act Under the Equality Act it is unlawful to discriminate, harass or victimise employees or job applicants on the grounds of their religion, religious belief or philosophical belief. “Religion or belief” is a protected characteristic under the Equality Act, just like for example age or race, and is defined as […]

When can an employer take ‘positive action’ in discrimination?

‘positive action’ in discrimination

The Employment Tribunal recently reached a decision about Positive Action in the case of Mr M Furlong v The Chief Constable of Cheshire Police [2018]. This case is about a relatively little used, but an often controversial, legal right employers can adopt to take positive steps to redress under representation in their workplaces. The Law […]

Is providing a dedicated parking space a reasonable adjustment for a disabled employee?

Disability Discrimination

Disability discrimination & reasonable adjustments In the recent case of Linsley v Commissioners for Her Majesty’s Revenue and Custom UKEAT/0150/18 the Employment Appeal Tribunal decided the employer had not breached its duty to make reasonable adjustments when not offering an employee a dedicated parking space. This case is a useful example of how tribunals and […]

How to deal with a complaint of sexual harassment by an employee

sexual harassment at work

Sexual harassment at work What is sexual harassment? Sexual Harassment is one of the most difficult situations a worker can face. The legal definition of Sexual Harassment is any ‘unwanted conduct of a sexual nature which has the purpose or effect of violating the dignity of a worker, or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating […]

Is Veganism capable of being protected under discrimination law?

The BBC reported early in December that a case is due to come before an Employment Tribunal next year where the Tribunal will be asked to decide whether or not veganism is protected under discrimination laws as a “philosophical belief”. Under the Equality Act 2010 it is unlawful to discriminate against someone in the workplace […]

Gender Equality in the Workplace: Still an issue?

Discrimination & Detrimental Treatment at Work I have recently been prompted to write this article about women in the workplace and the inequality that women face for a number of reasons including the fact that I have been instructed by several women in short succession who are clearly being treated to their detriment at work […]

Did calling an employee a “Fat, ginger pikey” amount to unlawful harassment?

‘positive action’ in discrimination

This was the unusual question considered by the Employment Appeal Tribunal in Evans v Xactly Corporation Ltd. The Law Harassment which is related to a “protected characteristic” is unlawful discrimination under the Equality Act 2010.  Relevant protected characteristics for the purposes of a harassment claim include age, disability, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, sex […]

Disability Discrimination and Ill Health Procedures

‘positive action’ in discrimination

Was the poor handling of ill-health retirement discrimination? In a recent case decided by the Court of Appeal an employer’s handling of the ill-health retirement process was scrutinised and reviewed when the employee in question alleged disability discrimination. The case is Dunn v Secretary of State for Justice and Anor. The Law In accordance with […]

Philosophical Beliefs and Discrimination

Can an employee be discriminated against for a philosophical belief when that employee is the only person to hold that belief? In a recent case decided by the Employment Appeal Tribunal (Gray v Mulberry Company (Design) Ltd ) the issue of philosophical beliefs was considered in a situation where the employee held a belief which […]

Disability Discrimination: Misconduct related to disability

‘positive action’ in discrimination

Is it discriminatory to dismiss an employee if you do not know the misconduct is related to their disability? Yes, held the Court of Appeal in City of York Council v PJ Grosset, unless the unfavourable treatment can be justified. The Law Under the Equality Act 2010 there are four types of disability discrimination.  This […]

Shared Parental Leave and Direct Sex Discrimination

Is an employer obliged to pay enhanced pay for shared parental leave? In June 2017, we reported on the Podcast about an Employment Tribunal case where a male employee, Mr Ali, successfully claimed direct sex discrimination when his employer refused to pay him enhanced shared parental leave pay. You can listen here. Mr Ali’s employer appealed […]

Expectation to work long hours gave rise to duty to make reasonable adjustments

‘positive action’ in discrimination

In the case of United First Partners Research v Carreras [2018] an expectation that an employee would work long hours was found to be a provision, criterion or practice for the purposes of bringing a disability discrimination claim for failure to make reasonable adjustments. The Law The Equality Act 2010 (EqA 2010) imposes a duty […]

Is it direct discrimination to reject a job applicant based on a perception their condition may become a disability?

Discrimination in Recruitment Yes, according to the case of The Chief Constable of Norfolk v. Coffey [2017] UKEAT, where the Norfolk Constabulary was found to have directly discriminated against a non-disabled job applicant by not offering her a job because they perceived her condition could become a disability in the future. The Law Under the […]

Discrimination: Are the motives of others relevant?

What happens when someone influences a decision maker in a discriminatory way? In the recent case of the Metropolitan Police Force v Denby, the Employment Appeal Tribunal had to consider whether someone who influenced a decision maker in a discriminatory way could be regarded as a joint decision maker. The Law The Equality Act 2010 […]

Breastfeeding & sex discrimination

Failing to carry out an appropriate risk assessment for a breastfeeding employee can be sex discrimination In the recent case of Otero Ramos v Servicio Galego de Saude, the European Court of Justice (CJEU) had to decide whether a defective risk assessment carried out for a breastfeeding employee can give rise to an inference of […]

Segregation of sexes in mixed school is direct discrimination

Keeping male and female pupils separate in education is contrary to the Equality Act 2010 A recent case in the Court of Appeal has made waves in the education sector.  As a result of the decision in HMCI v. The Interim Executive Board of Al-Hijrah School [2017], segregation of the sexes in co-educational schools will […]

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