Thursday, 27 May 2010

Interesting Article on New Flexible Working Plans

Changes to paternity leave - will they work?
Posted by Cath Everett in Pay & benefits on Wed, 26/05/2010 - 12:24

The new government will face significant challenges in implementing its flexible parental leave proposals given employers’ lukewarm response to existing paternity leave measures today, a leading HR body has warned.

The coalition government is keen for fathers to be able to take six months of paternity leave while their partners return to work. But the suggestion has caused concern among employers over the costs of administering the scheme, not least because of a requirement to monitor spousal entitlement and usage – whether they work for the business or not.

According to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development’s (CIPD) quarterly ‘Employee Focus’ survey undertaken among 800 organisations, however, only two out of five businesses are currently offering working fathers two weeks’ pay at or near their full rate. Just under a quarter offer no leave beyond the statutory two week minimum.

Mike Emmott, the CIPD’s employee relations advisor, said: “If flexible parental leave is going to become a reality, we need a step-change in the reward policies of UK organisations that encourages more fathers to take their statutory rights. This is something that will only be achieved through cultural change – and legislation is emphatically not the answer.”

The new government would need to think imaginatively if it wanted to encourage such change, however, he added.

Sarah Bond, head of diversity and employee engagement at management consultancy KPMG, also pointed out that the increasing demands being made on carers were likely to alter both male and female working patterns over the next 10 years. This meant that organisations would need to examine their family support packages to ensure that they matched changing trends.

“There are real incentives for businesses here. More and more talented people with parenting and caring responsibilities – fathers as well as mothers – seek out best practice employers that enable people to balance their work and family lives,” Bond added.

But employers were also concerned about other incoming legislation, the survey showed. Almost three out of ten saw the future Working Time Regulations as the biggest hindrance to doing business effectively, while just over the same number considered the Agency Worker Regulations to be the largest burden. Both new laws are due to come into effect in October 2011. A mere 28% and 13% respectively believed that either would be helpful.

“The CIPD believes that the Working Time Regulations in particular have negligible value in limiting unhealthy workplace behaviour. We are, therefore, calling for its repeal in the context of the review currently being undertaken by the European Commission,” Emmott said.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

New Coalition Promises Flexible Working for Everyone

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Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Right to a Fair Trial Defence Applies in Criminal Proceedings but not in an Employment Tribunal

Right to a Fair Trial Defence Applies in Criminal Proceedings but not in an Employment Tribunal

12 may - The Right to challenge your accusers under the ECHR Article 6 does not apply in an employment tribunal...

In Power v Greater Manchester Police Authority EAT 29/04/2010 Mr Power claimed at an employment tribunal that Greater Manchester Police Authority dismissed him because of his spiritual beliefs. the Respondents argued that he was dismissed because of his conduct, namely, the disruptive way in which he practiced his beliefs.

HHJ Mc Mullen said:

'Mr Power does have....a right to a fair trial and in criminal proceedings a right to confront those who accuse him. However in civil proceedings, that is in an employment tribunal determining his rights, when he brings a claim of discrimination the proper approach is decide if it passes the prima facie test in Igen Ltd v Wong [2005] IRLR 258. Then the Respondent is called upon to provide an explanation. The explanation will be the less credible if relevant witnesses are not produced by the Respondent and are not there to support its case and, of course, cannot be cross-examined. That is not, it seems to us, a breach of a convention right nor is there a right to confront any particular witness when he accuses a corporate respondent of discrimination. The Art 6.3(d) right applies to the confrontation of accusers in a criminal process, not as a Claimant in a discrimination case'

Thursday, 6 May 2010

Employment Law and the Differences Between the Parties

If you are still undecided on which party to vote for this article may help from 'The Press and Journal' it explains the differences in policy relating to employment law changes.

The main points are: Labour have obviously introduced the Equality Act 2010 and will increase paid paternity leave to 4 weeks and allow the sharing of paid maternity leave after 6 months.

Increasing the National Minimum wage in line with average earnings and abolishing the retirement age of 65.

The Conservatives will introduce new flexible working rules initially to every parent with a child up to the age of 18. Introducing a new system of flexible parental leave, potentially allowing for 52 weeks’ leave which could be shared between parents (although only mothers could take the first 14 weeks).

Possibly revoking agency worker regs

Possibly abolishing the retirement age.

Pay freeze for public sector workers.

The Lib Dems would extend the right to request flexible working, introduce name blind application forms to tackle discrimination, limit bonuses for bank workers and would introduce equal pay audits for employers with more than 100 employees.

Read more:

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

All You Need to Know on the Equality Act

Try this site which will be updated over the coming months: