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Vet dismissed for raising Covid concerns wins unfair dismissal case

In the case of Rendina v Royston Veterinary Centre Limited, Ms Charlotte Rendina worked at Royston Veterinary Centre as an assistant veterinary surgeon from 20 January 2020 until her dismissal on 30 March 2020. She raised several Health and Safety issues with the practice manager such as the lack of measures in place to protect staff from Covid-19, whether staff could limit patients to one per consultation and requesting to wear a mask as she was asthmatic.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 4 November 2021

National Living Wage to increase next year by 6.6%, to £9.50 an hour

The government has announced in the 2021 Budget that the National Living Wage will increase to £9.50 from April 2022. Ministers have accepted the Low Pay Commission’s recommendation for a 6.6% increase from £8.91, which applies to workers aged 23 and over. For those aged 21 to 22, the minimum will increase from £8.36 to £9.18.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 2 November 2021


Differing decisions in two separate claims relating to Employer’s Justified Retirement Age policy upheld by EAT

In the case of Pitcher v Chancellor Masters And Scholars Of The University Of Oxford the EAT considered joined appeals relating to the application of the Employer Justified Retirement Age policy (“EJRA”) operated by the University of Oxford (“the University”) and, in the case of Professor Pitcher, St John’s College (“the College”).

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 1 November 2021

EAT rules that a constructive dismissal can constitute an act of discriminatory harassment

In the case of Ms M Driscoll v Varela, Ms Driscoll was employed as an executive assistant by V & P Global Ltd, a legal recruitment consultancy. She worked closely with Mr Varela, the founder and chief executive of the consultancy. Ms Driscoll asserts that, on various occasions in the course of her employment, Mr Varela made comments which constituted harassment related to sex, race or disability, contrary to section 26 of the Equality Act; that she was victimised by him, after her employment had ended; and that the consultancy was in breach of its duty to provide written particulars of employment.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 29 October 2021

CIPD releases new in-depth report urging immigration reforms to tackle labour shortage

According to the CIPD, which launched a new in-depth report ‘Addressing skills and labour shortages post-Brexit’ based on a survey of more than 2000 employers and focus groups with employers in low-paying sectors, short-term interventions on immigration policy are required to tackle the immediate labour crisis. It finds that most labour and skills shortages currently facing the UK pre-date the pandemic and are therefore unlikely to be resolved by the gradual return to pre-pandemic norms.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 28 October 2021

Timpson boss announces that all staff can claim back HRT prescription costs

James Timpson, the CEO of the retailer best known for key cutting and shoe repairs, announced on Twitter that ‘…all my colleagues can claim on expenses their prescription costs when they are recommended HRT. It’s so important that we support our colleagues going through the menopause.’

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 27 October 2021

Large companies will have to disclose their environmental impact under new government plans

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has published a roadmap setting out details on new Sustainability Disclosure Requirements which will mean businesses must start disclosing their environmental impact. The new requirements will also apply to pension schemes, investment products and asset managers and owners.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 26 October 2021

HR trainer wins unfair dismissal claim after being sacked while on maternity leave

In the case of Mrs A Rodin v Dhillons Management Services Limited, Mrs Rodin provided training services to a company that managed HR activities over a number of franchise operations, including Dominos Pizza, Costa Coffee and others. Mrs Rodin earned £25,000 per annum. She stated that she had worked on the Domino's Pizza contract for 16 years and latterly was employed by Dhillons Management Services from May 2016.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 25 October 2021

Director of accountancy firm sentenced for advertising non-existent jobs

Tshovo Accountancy Services Limited had been prosecuted by the City of London Corporation’s Trading Standards Service and subsequently convicted of fraudulent trading, following a four-week trial at Southwark Crown Court. Wemba Akobola was sentenced to 18 months’ imprisonment, suspended for 18 months at the Old Bailey. He was also ordered to carry out 200 hours of unpaid work and banned from being a director for five years.

Article by: Makbool Javaid, Partner - Simons Muirhead & Burton 22 October 2021