Category Archives: Discrimination

Case update (2): Discrimination – Employer’s defence

discrimination definition
Summary:  Can an employer successfully defend itself against a harassment claim by showing that it provided training to the harasser, regardless of when this took place? No, says the EAT in Allay v Gehlen (available here).  Employers have an ongoing duty to review and refresh training aimed at preventing discrimination, bullying, and harassment.  The training…
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Coronavirus (COVID-19): Vaccinations – Can Employers INSIST?

covid vaccination
Currently, as the UK goes through its priority groups, we are not yet in a situation where everyone has had the opportunity to be vaccinated (whether they wish to be or not). In particular, the priority groups are primarily set on the basis of age. Therefore introducing a mandatory vaccination policy now would likely be…
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Case update (2):  Discrimination – Interim relief

discrimination definition
Summary:  Do Tribunals have the power to grant interim relief for discrimination claims? No, but the current absence of interim relief is probably unlawful, held the EAT in Steer v Stormshore Ltd available here. Background:  Interim relief is where an order is made by the Tribunal for the continuation of the claimant’s employment (including wages)…
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Case update (3):  An employer is justified in discriminating against an employee if the actions reduce company costs and the employer is suffering an absence of means satisfying the ‘COSTS PLUS’ rule

Summary: Is an employer justified in discriminating against an employee if the actions reduce company costs? Yes, says the Court of Appeal in Heskett v Secretary of State for Justice available here, if the employer is suffering an ‘absence of means’. Background:  Where a provision, criterion or practice (“PCP”) planned by an employer impacts on…
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Case update (2):  Discrimination – expanding the scope

Summary:  If an employer announces during a radio interview that they would never hire (or wish to work with) a homosexual, are they guilty of discrimination even in circumstances where there was no hiring process ongoing at the time of the comment? Yes, says the European Court of Justice (CJEU) in NH v. Associazione Avvocatura…
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Case update (1): Disability discrimination – It’s all in the timing

Summary:  Can employees succeed in a discrimination claim in relation to acts which occur before their condition amounts to a disability? No, says the EAT in Tesco Stores Ltd v Tennant, available here. Background:   A physical or mental condition only amounts to a disability under the Equality Act 2010 if it “has a substantial and…
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Helpful new guidance from ACAS on NDAs

sexual harrassment in the workplace
What do we already know? We updated you in our July and August Newsletters on the Government’s consultations in relation to sexual harassment in 2019 (see here and here).  We also updated you in our November Newsletter on the Government’s response to the Women and Equalities Committee’s (WESC’s) report on the use of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) in discrimination…
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Guidance (1): ECHR on sexual harassment

sexual harrassment in the workplace
The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has issued up-to-date practical guidance (available here), which explains employers’ legal responsibilities and the practical steps they should take to prevent and respond to harassment and victimisation at work. The guidance also provides advice for workers to help them understand the law and their employer’s obligations to prevent…
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Case update (1): Discrimination – Are Ethical Vegans Protected?

vegetarian
What do we already know? In our October 2019 Newsletter Case update (2): Discrimination – are vegetarians protected?, we updated you on the case of Conisbee v Crossley Farms Limited, in which the Tribunal decided that vegetarianism was not a protected belief under discrimination law. The Tribunal’s reasons were that there are a wide variety…
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Government reforms (1):  Non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) – Response to WESC report

sexual harrassment in the workplace
What do we already know? In June 2019, the Women and Equalities Select Committee (WESC) published its report on the use of confidentiality clauses, which are also known as Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs), in discrimination and harassment cases. The WESC concluded that the imbalance of bargaining power between employers and employees is a key driver behind…
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