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ACAS publishes new advice on hybrid working

ACAS has published advice for employers on how to consider, discuss and introduce hybrid working. Hybrid working can help businesses attract and retain staff as well as increase productivity. Hybrid working is a type of flexible working where staff split their time between working remotely and in their employer’s workplace.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 20 July 2021

Primary school teacher with Parkinson’s wins disability discrimination appeal

In Kerr v Fife Council a primary school teacher, Janet Kerr, who suffers from Parkinson’s Disease, filed a disability discrimination claim alleging that St Leonard’s School had failed to make reasonable adjustments in terms of section 20 of the Equality Act, 2010 by not adjusting her shift pattern to accommodate the symptoms of fatigue associated with Parkinson's Disease; and by not re-classifying the reason for her absences so that her pay would not be adversely affected.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 19 July 2021

How to handle staff reluctant to return to work

The end of lockdown is in sight and a return to normality is beckoning but what about employees who are hesitant to return to work? Employees coming back to work post-lockdown or post-furlough raises a number of important questions for both employers and employees, particularly where it is impossible for employees to work from home. For example: can an employer order its employees to return to work in circumstances where employees may not feel that it is safe to do so?

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 16 July 2021


Midwife loses appeal over having to give evidence on day one instead of day two of trial

In the case of Buckle v Ashford And St Peter's Hospital NHS Trust, Ms Buckle is a midwife. She was engaged by an employment agency. There was an incident with a patient and Ms Buckle alleged that she was subject to abuse and that she was forced to continue working in the room with the patient.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 15 July 2021

legal challenges

Employee on furlough loses claim for holiday pay

In the case of D Perkins v The Best Connection Group an employment tribunal has ruled that that holiday pay doesn’t accrue on furlough. The ET ruled that Mr Perkins, a contractor, was not a worker for the purposes of the Working Time Regulations 1998 and therefore didn’t accrue annual leave during that time.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 14 July 2021

Sainsbury’s worker wins unfair dismissal case in race row

In the case of Cunnington v Sainsburys Mrs Cunnington had worked for Sainsburys for 28 years. On the day of the incident Mrs Cunnington was working a morning shift with a long-term work colleague. She picked up a cuddly toy, a black rabbit named Bing.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 12 July 2021

Another win for Deliveroo in the courts over workers’ rights

The latest appeals court ruling is the fourth judgment in the U.K. that supports Deliveroo’s contention that its riders are self-employed, following earlier judgments by the Central Arbitration Committee and two at the High Court. The case concerned the Independent Workers’ Union’s attempt to unionize a portion of the service’s delivery riders operating around Camden.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 9 July 2021

Can a constructive dismissal claim succeed where an employer has tried to put right the wrong

In the case of Flatman v Essex County Council Ms Flatman was employed as a learning support assistant. From September 2017, she was required to give support to a disabled pupil, meaning she had to engage in physical lifting activities. Over a period of months, she repeatedly requested manual handling training, but was not provided with it.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 8 July 2021

Appeal allowed after healthcare worker racially abused

In the case of Key Care Support Ltd v Johnson an agency worker, on a zero hours contract, accepted a night shift at Mather Fold House, a residential unit. Key Care Support supplies healthcare workers to its clients. Following that night shift the agency worker, Mr Johnson, was asked by Ms Rachel Wright of the agency how it had gone.  He had informed her that he did not like working at Mather Fold House for three reasons, one of which being that he had been racially abused whilst working there by an agency worker supplied by a different agency. 

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 7 July 2021