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									            Employment
            Legislation 2003 and
            beyond


7/15/2010        Levy & McRae      1
            Introduction
               This slideshow aims to provide a readily accessible guide to
                employment legislation that is to be implemented into UK law in 2003
                and beyond. The proposed legislative timetable is set out in
                chronological order, with a summary of its provisions. Note that there
                is a degree of uncertainty about when some important legislation,
                notably the amended Transfer of Undertakings (Protection of
                Employees) Regulations 1981, commonly known as TUPE, will come
                into force. Where appropriate, advice to employers on the implications
                of the specific regulations is also provided.

               The major feature of 2003 is likely to be the coming into force of the
                provisions of the Employment Act 2002 (EA 2002): the ‘family-friendly’
                policies in respect of new maternity, paternity and adoptive leave and
                pay and the new right to request flexible working in April 2003; and the
                measures to assist employers and employees to resolve their disputes
                internally and proposals to modernise the employment tribunal system
                in December.



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            Topics of Discussion
               The Employment Practices Data Protection Code of Practice
               Family-friendly policies of the Employment Act 2002
               Young Worker Protection
               Questionnaires in equal pay
               Conduct of Employment Agencies and Employment Business
                Regulations
               Amended TUPE Regulations
               Race Directive
               Extension of Working Time Regulations
               Changes to Discrimination Legislation
               Implementation of the remainder of the EA 2002
               Disability Discrimination Act 1995
               EC Information and Consultation Directive
               Age Provisions of the Equal Treatment Directive
               Data Protection Act 1998


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            March 2003
                 THE EMPLOYMENT PRACTICES DATA PROTECTION CODE OF PRACTICE

            The fourth and final part of the Employment Practices Data Protection Code is expected
                 to be published early in 2003.

            The Code has four parts:
               Recruitment and selection – about job applications and pre-employment vetting;
               Employment records – about collecting, maintaining and using records about
                workers;
               Monitoring at work – about monitoring workers’ use of telephone or email systems
                and vehicles; and
               Medical information – about occupational health, medical testing, drug and genetic
                screening.

            The code contains extremely useful checklists and benchmarks that assist compliance
                 with the Data Protection Act 1998 – see website: www.dataprotection.gov.uk




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            April 2003
            FAMILY-FRIENDLY POLICIES OF THE EMPLOYMENT ACT 2002

            Maternity, paternity, adoption leave and pay

            The package for parents includes:
               Six months’ paid and a further six months’ unpaid maternity leave for working
                mothers;
               Two weeks’ paid paternity leave for working fathers;
               Six months’ paid and a further six months’ unpaid leave for working adoptive
                parents;
               An increase in the basic rate of statutory maternity pay to £100;
               Reimbursement of maternity, paternity and adoption payments made by
                employers, with a full 100% recoverable by small employers and a further
                compensation payment on top; and
               The legal right to apply to work flexibly for parents with children under six years,
                and for parents with disabled children up to the age of 18 years who have worked
                for the employer for six months.

            The Regulations actually come into force on 24 November 2002 and apply to women
                whose babies are due on or after 6 April 2003. The Department of Trade and
                Industry is producing guidance on all aspects of this new legislation. Employers
                should review their current entitlements and create new parental leave and/….


7/15/2010                          Levy & McRae                                                        5
            FAMILY-FRIENDLY POLICIES OF THE EMPLOYMENT ACT 2002
            Cont.


               adoption policies. They can also expect an increase in the number of
               requests to work more flexibly and they should familiarise themselves
               thoroughly with the scheme and prepare coherent policies to deal with
               the applications. They should not underestimate the possibly negative
               effect on those who are not entitled to make a request for flexible
               working.




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            April 2003
            YOUNG WORKER PROTECTION

            The new Regulations implementing the Young Workers Directive will come
                into effect on 6 April 2003. The Regulations will protect around 40,000
                workers aged between 16 and 18 from working excessive or
                unsociable hours, affecting the working hours of those between
                minimum school leaving age and their 18th birthday. Their working
                time will be limited to:
               40 hours a week;
               Eight hours in any one day; and
               Night working prohibited between 10pm-6am or 11pm-7am.

            Some sectors are exempted from the night working restrictions because of
               their particular operational needs. Working between the hours of
               midnight and 4am is prohibited except in the most exceptional
               circumstances.



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            Likely to be early 2003
            QUESTIONNAIRES IN EQUAL PAY

            A ‘questionnaire’ procedure is currently available in individuals’ disputes
                over matters of sex, race and disability discrimination, but not in the
                area of equal pay disputes. The EA 2002 introduces a formal
                questionnaire procedure for use in equal pay tribunal cases, with time
                limits for an employer response. The purpose of the procedure is to
                help the potential applicant decide whether to institute proceedings
                and to help them to formulate and present their case. This enables the
                key faces to be settled quickly and can encourage not only the swift
                establishment of evidence but also settlement of cases.




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            Spring 2003
            CONDUCT OF EMPLOYMENT AGENCIES AND EMPLOYMENT
               BUSINESSES REGULATIONS

            These Regulations control the operation of employment agencies and
               businesses. They clarify the employment rights and obligations of
               such agencies, their workers and clients and will prevent ‘temp’ to
               ‘perm’ transfer fees unless certain conditions are met.




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            Early 2003?
            AMENDED TUPE REGULATIONS

            It is hoped that the long-delayed new Regulations will provide more clarity
                  on the vexing question of a ‘relevant transfer’, particularly in the
                  context of contracting out; the position on occupational pensions; and
                  on transfer-related dismissals and post-transfer harmonisation. The
                  Regulations will require the transferor to provide information on terms
                  and conditions of transferring employees to the transferee.




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            July 2003
            RACE DIRECTIVE

            The Regulations to implement the Directive cover discrimination on
                grounds of race and ethnic origins. They introduce a new definition of
                indirect discrimination and of harassment.




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            1 August 2003
            EXTENSION OF WORKING TIME REGULATIONS

               Regulations will extend the scope of the 1998 Regulations to cover
                road, rail, air, sea and inland waterways transport, sea fishing, offshore
                work and junior doctors.
               Note that in November 2004 the European Commission is to review
                the current 48-hour opt-out provision of the Directive.
               The provisions relating to mobile workers – working hours, rest breaks
                and night work – are to be amended under two separate deadlines:
                August 2003 and March 2005.




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            2 December 2003
            CHANGES TO DISCRIMINATION LEGISLATION

            In October 2002 the Government published a consultation document,
                Equality and Diversity: The Way Ahead and sets of draft regulations
                and explanatory notes on sexual orientation, religion and belief to
                implement the Equal Treatment Directive. These prohibit

               Direct and indirect discrimination and harassment based on a person’s
                sexual orientation. This is defined as being an orientation towards
                people of the same sex (covering gay men and lesbianism); the
                opposite sex (covering straight men and women); or both sexes
                (covering bisexual men and women).
               Direct and indirect discrimination and harassment on grounds of
                ‘religion and belief’. This is defined as being any religion, religious
                belief or similar philosophical belief. It does not include any
                philosophical or political belief more generally, unless that belief is
                similar to a religious belief. There is an exception – a genuine
                occupational requirement (GOR) – where the employer has an ethos
                based on a particular religion or belief. /…..


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            CHANGES TO DISCRIMINATION LEGISLATION CONT.



            Employers are advised to review their equal opportunities’ policies and
               training. They may also wish to consider the potential impact of the
               ‘religion and belief’ provisions on their current working practices and
               annual holiday arrangements.




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            December 2003
            IMPLEMENTATION OF THE REMAINDER OF THE EA 2002

            The Employment Act 2002 also includes the following provisions:
               New minimum three-step standards for disciplinary and grievance
                procedures – which apply to all workplaces and all employees – and
                dispute resolution, including new unfair dismissal rules. The Advisory,
                Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) is to revise its Code of
                Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures;
               Modernisation of employment tribunals, including a fixed period of
                conciliation to promote timely settlement of disputes and changes to
                compensation awards; and
               The establishment of union learning representatives: ACAS is working
                with the Department of Education & Skills on a draft code.

            Employers will need to ensure that their disciplinary and grievance
               procedures meet the statutory minimum requirements. Further
               guidance is expected from the Government on the implications of
               these proposals.



7/15/2010                      Levy & McRae                                          15
            October 2004
            DISABILITY DISCRIMINATION ACT 1995

            The scope of the 1995 Act will be broadened by removing the present
                small employer exemption and by extending its provisions to cover
                forms of employment that are currently excluded I.e. employment on
                ships, planes and hovercraft, fire fighters, prison officers, the police,
                business partnerships and barristers, but not the armed forces. There
                will also be recognition of indirect discrimination in disability. Part III of
                the 1995 Act, placing a duty on service providers to make reasonable
                adjustments to their premises, also comes into force.

            The new provisions mean that these employers will have to treat disabled
                applicants on the same basis as other applicants and allow them to
                take frontline jobs, provided they are capable of doing this. To this
                end, the Government is drawing up new medical standards and
                training tests (e.g. for trainee fire fighters) to enable the changes to be
                put into practice.



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            From March 2005 (Three Stages)

            EC INFORMATION AND CONSULTATION DIRECTIVE

            Employees will have the right to information about a business’s economic
               situation, employment prospects and decisions likely to lead to
               substantial changes in work organisation or contractual relations e.g.
               redundancies and transfers.

            This is to be implemented in the UK in three stages:
               Initially, it will only apply to businesses with 150 or more employees:
                March 2005.
               It will then be extended to businesses with 100 or more employees
                after two years: March 2007.
               After another year it will be further extended to those with 50 or more
                employees: March 2008.

            The implementation of these provisions has potentially significant
                implications for organisations, their managers and workers.


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            December 2006
            AGE PROVISIONS OF THE EQUAL TREATMENT DIRECTIVE

            Legislation outlawing age discrimination is expected to come into force in
                December 2006.

            Note that in the summer the EAT is expected to rule on whether the current
               exclusion of over 65s from claiming unfair dismissal and redundancy is
               contrary to EU law.




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            October 2007
            DATA PROTECTION ACT 1998

            See above for the publication of the Employment Practices Data Protection
                Code.




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