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NEWS 11 - 23 April 2021

Published 10 May 2021

Welcome to the news.


This week  we will start to catch up on some of the backlog of stories from the past three weeks.  Firstly, we look at some of the issues facing employees considering whether to return to work or continue working from home.(1)  This is in keeping with Ministers urging employers to give homeworkers the right to ‘disconnect,’ to mitigate against the rapidly mounting tide of mental health issues which COVID has unleashed on the UK workforce.(2)   


Staying with all things Covid we have another tribunal decision likely to shape the forthcoming landscape in the post Covid world.  An employee who refused to return to work on health and safety grounds was unsuccessful with their claim for unfair dismissal.(3)  


A number of other employment legal decisions are worthy of note.  An ECJ ruling has determined that workers on ‘standby’ are not engaged in work for the purposes of the working-time directive.(4) The court of Appeal rules on time limits for employer claims in relation to expression of belief.(5)  A ruling in a whistleblowing claim has determined that the type of legal breach does not need to be specified to be protected from detriment due to dismissal.(6)  In another case, the removal of a magistrate and director for objecting to same-sex marriage was not deemed discriminatory.(7)  In the case of Smith vs Pimlico Plumbers the EAT has ruled that claims for unpaid holidays must still meet the usual time limits.(8)           


The TUC has produced a number of articles worthy of attention over the last few weeks.  The first looks at the case for Internationalism in the face of policy failures and economic decline.(9)    There is research on the impact of Covid on insecure workers.(10)  There was outcry expressed at the findings of the recent Racial Inequality Review,(11) and a more detailed look at inequality in health and social care.(12)    Finally, the TUC has also called for urgent action to support young workers who have been hit very hard by the Covid pandemic.(13)   


We conclude this weeks offering with some other stories currently touring the employment law circuit.  Deliveroo has the worst IPO in history amid further investigation into the shadowy world of the ‘gig economy’.(14)   News arrives that the ICO issued fines of just £42m in 2020.(15)   Finally, we have an article which assesses the impact of the Uber ruling(s) in UK on its world domination plans.(16) 

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For employment law advice or if you are affected or want information and support by any of the issues in this article please give us a call. 

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