David Gibson Crutes

Member Article

Tipster: Even handed in times of redundancy

Due to the economic climate a number of employers are thinking about redundancies. They face particular problems when a mother is on maternity leave. Some employers are rightfully fearful of facing a sex discrimination claim and/or a breach of the relevant maternity regulations, if they get it wrong. It is obviously a very sensitive time and understanding and consideration should be given to all parties needs.

In a recent case, one employer attempted to address this difficulty by giving special treatment to the female employee on maternity leave in the scoring for the redundancy process. This placed her male counterpart at a detriment. He brought a claim and the Employment Appeal Tribunal held that the male employee had received less favourable treatment and, therefore had been treated less favourably on the grounds of his gender.

This shows how difficult and complicated it can be for employers and the need to get good advice early in the process to ensure that the redundancy procedure is not tainted by discrimination. Employers may feel that they are stuck between a rock and a hard place but ultimately if they can show that they have been even handed in their treatment then hopefully they will avoid expensive claims.

For further information about this tip or to learn more about Crutes’ services contact David Gibson on 0191 233 9762.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by David Gibson .

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