Mon 25 Sep 2023

Employment Law Round Up - September 2023

Our monthly employment law round up.

Supermarket leads the way in making flexible working requests a day 1 right

Tesco has changed its flexible working policy to allow staff members to request flexible work from day 1 of employment.  While we know that a number of changes to the current flexible working regime will take effect next year, via the Employment Relations (Flexible Working) Act 2023, making the right to request a day 1 right is not one of them.   The UK Government has though indicated that secondary legislation will be put in place to remove the current 26-week qualifying service requirement, so the right to request flexible work will become a day 1 right in due course. In the meantime, we may see other employers follow Tesco's lead and allow employees to request flexible working arrangements from day 1.

Mothers continue to face workplace discrimination

A survey by Pregnant Then Screwed has confirmed the continuing discrimination experienced by working mothers.  More than half of those who responded to the survey were discriminated against while pregnant, on maternity leave or on return to work, with ten percent saying they were bullied or harassed.  Nearly a fifth then chose to leave their employer, while another seven percent were made redundant, dismissed for another reason, or felt forced to leave.  The survey also highlights that the vast majority of breast feeding mothers did not have somewhere suitable to express while at work. 

BSI publishes diversity, equality and inclusion in the workplace code of practice

The British Standards Institute ("BSI") has published a new code of practice giving practical guidance on how to develop and implement an effective diversity, equality and inclusion ("DEI") framework in the workplace.  Aimed at organisations of any size it provides recommendations for practical steps that any organisation can take to help support DEI in the workplace.

Statutory code of practice to accompany Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill

The UK Government has announced that a statutory code of practice is to be introduced that will provide further clarification for unions on their obligations under the Strikes (Minimum Service Levels) Bill.  This will include providing further detail on the "reasonable steps" unions will be required to take to ensure workers comply with a work notice.  The code of practice will be published after consultation with Acas and other interested parties. 

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