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International Workers’ Memorial Day – a good time to review health and safety policies

Sunday 28 April marks 2019's International Workers' Memorial Day (IWMD), where we remember workers who have lost their lives through their employment, and look to the future to ensure and commit to safety at work going forward.
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International Workers’ Memorial Day – a good time to review health and safety policies

Equal pay claims “check-out” at Court of Appeal stage

The claimants in the long-running equal pay saga against supermarket household name Asda secured another positive step forward with the Court of Appeal (CoA) finding last week. The CoA decided that predominantly female supermarket employees (checkout staff and other customer-facing roles) can compare themselves to higher-paid predominantly male employees at distribution sites for the purposes of an equal pay claim (Asda Stores Ltd v. Brierley and others).
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Equal pay claims “check-out” at Court of Appeal stage

New Acas age discrimination guidance

Acas has published new guidance on age discrimination at work, which can be found here. According to Acas, age discrimination is one of the most common forms of unfair treatment at work. Both younger and older employees across the UK experience discrimination based on their age. The guidance aims to support employers in preventing unfair treatment at work and eradicating bias against older and younger workers.
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New Acas age discrimination guidance

Disciplinary investigations: Common sense and even-handedness should prevail

In the recent Employment Tribunal (ET) case of Ball v. First Essex Bus Limited, the claimant, a 60-year-old bus driver who suffers from diabetes, has been successful in his unfair dismissal claim. He persuaded an ET that his dismissal for being under the influence of cocaine whilst on duty was both substantively and procedurally unfair. The claimant had failed a random drug test.
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Disciplinary investigations: Common sense and even-handedness should prevail

New legislation seeks to ensure restaurant owners give their employees all tips from customers

New legislation is expected to be implemented to ban restaurants from keeping tips from their employees. The intention is restaurant owners will not be able to make deductions from tips which are paid by card in order to fund administration costs.
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New legislation seeks to ensure restaurant owners give their employees all tips from customers

Is the Apprenticeship Levy failing?

The Apprenticeship Levy, which came into force in April 2017, requires employers with pay bills over £3 million to pay 0.5% of their total gross pay bill to the government (through PAYE) which is then used to fund approved apprenticeship programmes. Each employer has an annual Apprenticeship Levy allowance of £15,000 to offset against their levy liability.
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Is the Apprenticeship Levy failing?

Eid al-Adha: dealing with religious festivals in the workplace

Eid al-Adha (known as the festival of sacrifice), the Islamic holiday marking the end of the Hajj pilgrimage, is due to begin this coming Tuesday (21 August). The festival is celebrated with prayer and feast, typically on a large scale with Muslims in their respective communities coming together to partake in the festivities. Many Muslims may request time off work to celebrate Eid al-Adha, so here are a few considerations for employers to bear in mind as the holiday approaches.
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Eid al-Adha: dealing with religious festivals in the workplace

Testing the limits of religious and philosophical belief discrimination

The Equality Act 2010 (the 2010 Act) prohibits direct discrimination, indirect discrimination and harassment in the workplace in respect of religion, religious belief and philosophical belief.
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Testing the limits of religious and philosophical belief discrimination

Acas Annual Report

Acas has issued its first annual report since the July 2017 Supreme Court judgment declaring employment tribunal fees unlawful (a previous blog post on the possible effects of that decision can be found here).
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Acas Annual Report

Government proposes major overhaul of Gender Recognition Act

The Government Equality Office (GEO) is proposing reform of the Gender Recognition Act 2004. This Act enables transgender people to obtain legal recognition of their acquired gender by the issuing of a Gender Recognition Certificate and changing the sex on their birth certificate.
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Government proposes major overhaul of Gender Recognition Act