Equal Pay Day puts the spotlight on gender pay gaps

10 November 2017 is Equal Pay Day – the day when women effectively stop earning for the remainder of the year compared to men. This is based on the current (mean) gender pay gap which the ONS has revealed to be 14.1% for women working full-time. The Fawcett Society, the organisation behind the concept of Equal Pay Day, is leading a campaign urging politicians and employers to make a ‘pay gap pledge’ to close the …

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Government publishes details of administrative processes for EU nationals

The Government has today published further information on the new administrative processes which will apply to EU nationals in the UK who wish to apply for settled or temporary status post-Brexit. In brief: The future status and rights of EU nationals will be defined in the Withdrawal Agreement (WA).  The WA will be incorporated into UK law, enabling EU citizens to enforce those rights. A new application system is being designed from scratch.  Applications will …

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Independent review calls on employers to make mental health a priority

An independent review into mental health in the workplace, commissioned by the Government in January 2017, published its comprehensive report today. It calls for workplace mental health to now be a priority for organisations across the UK. The Thriving at work: Stevenson/Farmer review of mental health and employers report, which also takes into account the recent Taylor Review of Modern Working Practices, highlights that the UK is facing a significant challenge in respect of mental …

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Data Protection Bill: impact on employee data

On 14 September the UK Government published the draft Data Protection Bill, to replace the Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) and supplement the forthcoming General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in certain key areas. Our earlier Blog Entry provided an overview of the Bill. In this article we highlight the specific impact of the Bill on how employers process workforce data.  Extra safeguards for special categories of data Special categories of personal data are data revealing …

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Brexit: Latest developments on the future of EU nationals working in the UK

Employers who are monitoring the latest Brexit negotiations on the future status of EU nationals working in the UK may welcome the reassurance delivered by the Prime Minister in Florence recently that it remains one of her ‘first goals…. to ensure that [EU citizens] can carry on living…as before’, and that ‘the guarantee on….rights is real’. The Prime Minister says that ‘significant progress’ has been made, and this appears to include a concession that the …

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Draft Data Protection Bill published

Yesterday the Government published the draft Data Protection Bill which will replace the Data Protection Act 1998, supplement the General Data Protection Regulation in certain areas and provide more detail on how the GDPR will be enforced in the UK . DLA Piper’s Privacy team has published a blog post on their Privacy Matters blog which explains the key provisions of the Bill. The Bill will have a significant impact on how employers deal with …

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Monitoring employees: Guidance on privacy in the workplace

The recent decision of the European Court of Human Rights in Barbulescu v Romania (see our Be Aware blog post of 7 September) has placed the spotlight once more on the extent to which employers are permitted to monitor their employees’ communications and activities. The adoption of new information technologies in the workplace allows for systematic and potentially invasive monitoring, enabling employers to track employees not just in the workplace but potentially in their homes …

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ECHR confirms that employers do not have green light to monitor employee emails

Further to our Be Aware post of 1 February 2016 on 5 September 2017  the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights overturned the Lower Chamber’s judgment in Barbulescu v Romania and held the dismissal of an employee after his employer monitored his Yahoo Messenger communications and discovered that he had used the internet for personal purposes had breached his Article 8 of the Convention on Human Rights right to respect for his …

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Brexit: Update on future rights of EU citizens in the UK

In an update to our Be Aware article of 12 July 2017, Government publishes proposals for EU nationals, the UK and the EU have just concluded the latest round of their Brexit negotiations which will be of interest to employers who are monitoring developments as part of a communications strategy for keeping EU nationals in their workforce informed of the latest position. In this latest round of negotiations, the Home Office has reported that progress …

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Government publishes Statement of Intent on proposals for new data protection laws

On 7 August 2017, Government publishes its Statement of Intent (SoI) on ‘A new Data Protection Bill: Our planned reforms’. The SoI states that implementation of the GDPR and repeal of the Data Protection Act (DPA) will be done in a way that so far as possible preserves the concepts of the DPA to ensure that the transition for all is as smooth as possible while complying with the GDPR in full. The Government has …

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Holiday pay must include payment for any voluntary overtime normally worked

In the latest instalment to the litigation surrounding the correct calculation of holiday pay, the EAT has held that payment for voluntary overtime that is normally worked is within the concept of ‘normal remuneration’ and should therefore be taken into account in calculating holiday pay for the 4 weeks of holiday provided for by the Working Time Directive (WTD). This is the first binding decision in England and Wales on the issue of voluntary overtime. …

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Supreme Court ends employment tribunal fees with immediate effect

Employment tribunal fees were introduced for the first time in July 2013, and have been subject to challenge ever since. Over the course of the last 4 years, UNISON has launched two judicial reviews, both of which were unsuccessful in the High Court.  In 2015, UNISON’s appeal to the Court of Appeal failed.   Leave to appeal to the Supreme Court was granted and, following a two day hearing earlier this year,   this long running saga …

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Government publishes proposals for EU nationals

After many months of speculation about the Government’s proposals for European nationals[1] currently living and working in the UK, the Government has now published its Policy Paper setting out its plans.  This is welcome news to employers employing European nationals in their workforce. Whilst the terms of the Policy Paper are still, of course, subject to negotiation with the EU (and an expectation that they will be reciprocated),  they do at least serve as a …

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Taylor Review report into employment practices in the modern economy published

The Taylor Review’s final report on employment practices in the modern economy has been delivered to Government and published on 11 July 2017. The Review panel, chaired by Matthew Taylor, has made a number of recommendations for specific measures which the Review panel would like to see enacted as soon as possible, but also makes the case for longer term strategic shifts. As an overarching principle, the report issues a call to sign up to …

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Queen’s Speech unveils employment law changes

Today the Queen unveiled the Government’s legislative programme for the new two-year Parliament. This included a number of employment law reforms, aside from the impact of Brexit: There will be a new national policy on immigration. However, there is currently very little detail about what the new policy will be. The Conservative party manifesto included an objective to reduce annual net migration to below 100,000, a commitment to double the Immigration Skills Charge levied on …

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