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EAT rules that employee was fairly dismissed after refusing to come to work over Covid fears

In the case of Rodgers v Leeds Laser Cutting Ltd Mr Rodgers was employed as a laser operator. During March 2020, he informed his employer that “unfortunately [he had] no alternative but to stay off work until the lockdown [had] eased”. His reasoning was that he had small children about whom he was concerned. There had been a suspected case of the virus at the warehouse.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 20 May 2022

Shop assistant wins unfair constructive dismissal case after being asked to work weekends despite having no childcare

In Ms J Keating v WH Smith Retail Holdings Ltd Jacqueline Keating has 2 children and is a single parent. Her terms and conditions included, under the normal working hours section, a provision that she was to work 20 hours per week, flexible to the needs of the business. It was also stated that the she could be asked to work an extra 8 hours per week where the trading patterns require more staff. Further, that she may be required to work Saturdays, Sundays or Public/Bank Holidays.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 19 May 2022

Electrician wins sexual harassment claim after being called bald

In the case of Mr A Finn v The British Bung Manufacturing Company Limited Mr Finn was employed as an electrician between 22 September 1997 and 25 May 2021. Upon the latter date, he was dismissed from his employment without notice. He complained that he was a victim of sexual harassment, due to comments made about his lack of hair, including being called a "bald c***" by factory supervisor Jamie King during an argument in 2019.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 18 May 2022

Spain drafts bill to introduce menstrual leave

Spain could become the first European country to introduce medical leave for women who suffer from severe period pain. Spain's equality minister Irene Montero said on Twitter: "We will recognise by law the right of women with painful menstruation to a special temporary incapacity that will be paid for by the state from day one". She added "We are making progress so that it is no longer normal to go to work in pain and to put an end to the stigma, shame and silence surrounding menstruation. We are making progress on rights".

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 17 May 2022

EHRC says not all long covid cases fall under the definition of disability

The EHRC has issued a statement on ‘long Covid’, disability and the Equality Act saying "there continues to be discussion of the various symptoms related to Covid-19 that are often referred to as ‘long Covid’ and whether they would constitute a disability under the Equality Act.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 16 May 2022

Accountant loses age discrimination claim after being called ‘demanding millenial’

In the case of Mr J Patel v Lucy A Raymond & Sons Limited Mr Patel is a 26-year-old man who was first diagnosed with dyslexia in 2011, when he was in the sixth form at school and struggling with his A-Levels. In 2020, Jay Patel was employed by insurance firm Lucy A Raymond & Sons for just over a month.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 13 May 2022

Ukrainian Asda worker wins racial harassment claim

In Mrs S Henderson v Asda Stores Ltd Mrs S Henderson, an Asda employee of 15 years, took the company to an employment tribunal, winning one count of racial harassment and one of constructive unfair dismissal.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 12 May 2022

Teacher wins harassment case after having to express milk in school toilets and car park

In the case of Ms T Mellor v The MFG Academies Trust Tara Mellor had been allowed to express milk in a special room at Mirfield Free Grammar School after her first child but was told this was 'not an option' due to Covid rules after her second baby. She repeatedly asked bosses for a room in which she could express milk to give her new-born daughter after work, an employment tribunal heard.

Article by: 11 May 2022

Law firm says staff can work from home but will have to take a 20% pay cut

According to legal sector news website RollOnFriday, which first reported the new policy, management at law firm Stephenson Harwood have decided to let staff work from home full-time but those who opt to go fully remote will have their pay cut by 20%. The option is included in the firm's new hybrid and remote working policy, which came into force at the start of May. Stephenson Harwood has also offered its employees the option of a hybrid model, working up to two days remotely for the same salary.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 10 May 2022

Pandemic has made four-day working week viable for businesses

A new report from Henley Business School titled The four-day week: The pandemic and the evolution of flexible-working, explores the benefits of working fewer days to both organisations and workers, including improved quality of work (64%), the ability to attract and retain the right talent (68%), and employees feeling less stressed at work (78%).

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 9 May 2022