Equality Act 2010

Update – Young Judges Win Employment Tribunal

Update – Young Judges Win Employment Tribunal

We recently posted that the Ministry of Justice (MoJ) discriminated against younger judges by forcing them to leave their final salary scheme while protecting older judges.

View at Medium.com

The ruling, which confirmed there had been age, sex and race discrimination, could cost the government up to £118m. The case could also have knock-on consequences for both public and private sector.

The ET judge made this conclusion (page 36 of the judgement):

Conclusion

125. By reason of the transitional provisions contained in Part 2 of Schedule 2 to the Judicial Pensions Regulations 2015 made by the respondents, the respondents have treated and continue to treat the claimants less favourably than their comparators because of their age. The respondents have failed to show their treatment of the claimants to be a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim.

Employment Judge S.J. Williams

Read the full ET transcript here mccloud-v-moj.pdf

mccloud-v-moj

 

 

 

Post-Employment Victimisation & Discrimination is Unlawful

Post-Employment Victimisation & Discrimination is Unlawful

President Franklin D. Roosevelt would not travel on the 13th day of any month and would never host 13 guests at a meal. Napoleon and President Herbert Hoover were also triskaidekaphobic, with an abnormal fear of the number 13.
– Unknown

Friday the 13th, considered by many as one of the unluckiest days of the year, was upon us yesterday.  We published this post:

Proportionate Means of Achieving a Legitimate Aim

For those HR professionals that took the decision to stay tucked up in bed all day to avoid any potential Friday the 13th bad luck that may come their way, or alternatively, locked themselves in their drab hermetic-sealed office to ignore the superstitious chatter, we are giving them a second chance to embrace the Equality Act 2010 (EqA).

There will be those who administer the police injury Regulations – those indefatigable HR professionals that braved their fears yesterday and faced Friday 13th head on – who may have read the above post but still have the asinine view that the EqA does not apply to them: You know the sort!  their mantra, oft repeated, is … “we have a statutory duty… dontcha know! Anyway these medically retired officers have left – they can’t touch us with equality law“.

Oh dear.  How wrong can they be?

Dear reader, let us introduce you to the Court of Appeal decisions of Jessemey v Rowstock Ltd & Anor [2014] and Onu v Akwiwu & Anor [2014].

The Court of Appeal handed down these two judgements setting out important points of principle in equality law. In Jessemey v Rowstock Ltd & Anor [2014] (an age discrimination case) , heard alongside the conjoined appeals in Onu v Akwiwu & Anor [2014] (race discrimination case), the court found that the EqA does cover post-employment victimisation.

The EqA does provide for claims of post-employment victimisation, as required by the Equal Treatment Framework Directive (2000/78/EC), the Race Directive (2000/43/EC) and the European Court of Justice.

Post-termination protection is conferred by Section 108 of the Equality Act 2010 and that section applies only where a relationship has previously existed between the parties.  For instance, the relationship between a police force and those it medically retired!

In particular, the Court of Appeal took into account:

  • –       at the time the act was drafted, post-employment victimisation was unlawful (Rhys-Harper v Relaxion Group plc);
  • –       there was nothing suggesting that the government intended to change to law and remove this protection;
  • –       the Act’s explanatory notes suggested that post-employment victimisation was to be covered;
  • –       if it was not covered, the UK would be in breach of EU law; and
  • –       there is no rational basis for treating post-employment victimisation differently from post-termination discrimination and harassment.

Those not aligned with this truth are operating on a wrong perception of reality.

Coherence and internal logic are not notable attributes of the Friday 13th superstitions. Just like the film franchise series of the same name getting sillier and sillier, the failure of police forces to grasp their duty and to consider the EqA when dealing with those with injury awards will lead them into their own world of  never-ending horror sequels.

 

 

 

 

Introducing Our Live Feed of UK Employment Appeal Tribunal Case Law

Introducing Our Live Feed of UK Employment Appeal Tribunal Case Law

Happy new year to all our readers!

Under the Equality Act 2010 (Specific Duties) Regulations 2011, police forces are listed bodies (under schedule 19) and are required to comply with the non-devolved general and specific duties under the Equality Act 2010 (EqA). The Court of Appeal has clarified that protection against victimisation contained in the Equality Act can be extended to former employees.

In preparation of our 2017 series focusing on disability discrimination law, we are proud to publish another live connection to the British and Irish Legal Information Institute website.

The new Disability Discrimination EAT Caselaw menu item can be found on the right sidebar:

You will see each Employment Appeal Tribunal case (and new ones as soon as they are published) defined as relating to the Police (either as the named party in the case or referenced by the Judge as relevant to the law as established by the outcome of a former case).

The above search of bailli.org using the terms ‘disability discrimination‘ AND ‘chief constable’/’commissioner of the Met‘ (as at 1st Jan 2017) returns 422 results for EATs.  A  cursory straw-poll of the results shows that 31 cases directly relate to a Police force as a named party in the title of the appeal – so 7.3% of these listed disability discrimination EATs directly involve a police force and the rest involve other employers where the judges have use the legal precedents found in the police related EATs or their subsequent Court of Appeal hearing.

This frequency shows a revealing characteristic of how UK police services apparently fail in their obligations to the EqA given the appeal tribunals they defend are regularly quoted in otherwise non-police disability discrimination court proceedings.   Evidence of deep institutional failure or are forces the unfair victims of vexatious complaining? If the outcomes follow the same pattern of the judicial reviews, the majority of which are found against the police pension authoities, the former is more probable.  We intend to put a meaningful measure to the EAT results.

Is horrendous treatment of those applying, or with an injury award, a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim?  Is the aim legitimate and are there no less discriminatory ways of achieving it?   Can police forces admit to discrimination but hide behind the defence of saying it is objectively justified?

Over the coming months we will try to answer these questions and explain in easy terms how these cases relate to those with, or applying for, injury awards.