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Need to Know: July 2021

Employment - Office desk by window

In this latest edition of our ‘Need To Know’ employment and HR newsletter, we look at the practice of dismissing and re-engaging employees, whether it is discriminatory for employers to compel mothers to work certain hours and much more.

We also have included our usual HR Bullets – which cover other significant employment law updates from the past month.

Below are some of our key articles:

HR Bullets

  • Gender critical beliefs that include the belief that biological sex is real, important, immutable and not to be conflated with gender identity, are capable of being protected as a philosophical belief under the Equality Act 2010 and Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights (‘ECHR’) (Forstater v CGD Europe & ors)
  • It can still amount to indirect discrimination for an employer to require an employee to go to work regardless of childcare needs, even if the employer does not actually penalise the employee for non-compliance (Hughes v Progressive Support Limited)
  • An employment tribunal should take note of the childcare disparity between men and women in circumstances of indirect sex discrimination relating to a requirement to work flexibly (Dobson v North Cumbria Integrated Care NHS Foundation Trust)
  • An employee who was on annual leave in Italy when lockdown was announced was automatically unfairly dismissed by his employer for failing to follow company procedures and taking authorised holiday (Montanaro v Lansafe Ltd)
  • A change in status from equity partner to non-equity partner did not amount to a ‘continuing act’ for the purposes of the time limit for a discrimination claim (Moore Stephens LLP v Parr)
  • An employer had not received notification of an employment tribunal claim in the first COVID-19 lockdown and as such, time for submitting its response was extended (Fyfe v Arcadis Human Resources Ltd)
  • Acas has published a new report on dismissal and re-engagement (Acas – Dismissal and re-engagement (fire-and-rehire): a fact finding exercise)
  • The temporary COVID-19 adjusted right to work measures will end on 31 August 2021, not 20 June 2021 as previously announced (Guidance – Coronavirus (COVID-19): right to work checks)

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