The Queen’s Speech missed the long-promised Employment Bill, instead the Future of Work review and an inquiry was announced - what does this mean for employers?
The Queen’s Speech, given on 10 May 2022, was notably missing the long-promised Employment Bill. Having been included in the 2019 Queen’s Speech, and referred to on numerous occasions since then, its current absence has caused trade union concern about the extent to which the Government holds workers’ rights in regard.
Rather than employment legislation being introduced (with the exceptions of potentially new legislation allowing ports to refuse access to ferry services which do not pay the equivalent of the national minimum wage to seafarers whilst in UK waters and a new Modern Slavery Bill), instead, there is to be a further period of review and reflection.
On 12 May 2022, it was announced that Matt Warman MP would be leading a review into how best to support “a thriving future UK labour market”. Termed, the “Future of Work” review, it will “inform the government’s plans to ensure the UK is equipped with the right workforce, skills and working environment to seize the new economic opportunities of Brexit, Levelling Up and Net Zero”. The review is proposed to build on the existing commitments made following the Matthew Taylor Review, published in 2018, with some of these yet to be implemented.
The Terms of Reference for the review confirm that it is to include two phases – the first, a high-level assessment of the key strategic issues on the future of work, and the second, a more detailed assessment of selected areas of focus. The review is to be conducted over spring and summer 2022, followed by a written report with recommendations. The timescales for this written report are not included.
An Inquiry has also been launched by the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Committee at the end of May 2022. This Inquiry is seeking evidence on a number of topics:
Within each of these topics, a number of questions are proposed. Evidence can be submitted to the Inquiry by 8 July 2022. The Committee is specifically calling for evidence which addresses the current challenges being faced and proposes solutions.
Whilst one of the questions within the “Workers’ rights and protections” is how workers’ rights can be “improved”, May also saw a list being published in the press of the nine “most interesting” Brexit opportunities following an appeal by Jacob Rees-Mogg, Brexit Opportunities Minister, to readers to submit ideas. Two employment-related suggestions that made it into the top nine were (i) to remove requirements for agency workers to have all the attributes of a permanent employee; and (ii) to simplify the calculation of holiday pay to make it easier for businesses to operate, neither of which appear to focus on “improving” workers’ rights.
There may well be changes ahead in due course – and certainly several have been highly publicised, such as proposals to extend the statutory flexible working regime - but it seems unlikely that that anything substantive will be imminent, given the ongoing considerations as to precisely what any changes should look like post-Brexit and post-pandemic.
Regardless of the outcome of ballots on industrial action, unless there is drastic change to funding for schools in relation to pay increases, it will be unusual to find any organisational budget that is not impacted by the current economic situation.
Official statistics show that 15,336 claims which included a complaint of age discrimination were received at the Employment Tribunals between March 2020 and March 2021.
The outcome of the Employment Tribunal claim brought by Gulnaz Raja against Starling Bank Limited (1) (Starling), and Matthew Newman (2) was reported last month.
The BMA is advising all NHS / HSCNI consultants to ensure extra-contractual work is paid at the BMA minimum recommended rate and to decline offers of extra-contractual work that doesn't value them appropriately.
In the Autumn Statement delivered on 17 November, rises to the National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage rates were announced, to take effect from 1 April 2023.
The World Cup kicks off in Qatar on Sunday 20 November 2022, with the final taking place on Sunday 18 December 2022. Undoubtedly, this is a huge sporting event, and many employees will be keen to show their support for their favourite teams. However, due to the time difference, start times for the matches are between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. UK time, which could have an impact on employers if employees who wish to watch the matches are scheduled to work.
Settlement agreements are commonplace in an employment context and are ordinarily used to provide the parties to the agreement with certainty following the conclusion of an employment relationship.
Browne Jacobson’s education team has been named as winner of the ‘Legal Advisors to Education Institutions’ category at the Education Investor Awards 2022 for a record sixth time.
Over 3000 young people from across the UK and Ireland took part in a virtual legal careers insight event, aimed at making the legal profession more diverse.
Where an employee appeals against their dismissal under a contractual appeal procedure and their appeal is successful, reinstatement to their previous role is automatic and does not require approval or agreement from the employee.
The risk of assault against staff is, sadly, something that all schools need to consider carefully. Here one legal expert explains what they can do to protect staff and ensure they fulfil their duty of care.
Settlement agreements in an employment context are ordinarily used to provide both parties with certainty following the conclusion of an employment relationship – but what happens when there is alleged discrimination after entering into a settlement agreement?
A few weeks ago we brought you news that following the Government’s mini-budget it was confirmed that the off-payroll working rules (known as “IR35”) put in place for public and private sector businesses from 2017 and 2021 would be scrapped from April 2023.
In Mogane v Bradford Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) considered whether it was fair to dismiss a nurse as redundant on the basis that that her fixed-term contract was due to expire before that of her colleague.
The majority of people do not feel the need to embellish their CV to get that coveted position and move on up the career ladder. Their worthiness and benefit to the hiring organisation are easily demonstrated through the recruitment process – application, psychometric testing, selection day or interview.
In this article we set out some of the support that's available to schools in a bid to reduce the overhead that complaints management generates.