Justice Deferred: a critical guide to the Coalition's employment tribunal reforms

Submitted by sglenister on Thu, 07/02/2013 - 15:28

By David Renton and Anna Macey

Published in February 2013

This publication offers a chilling reminder of the extent to which access to justice is being systematically shut down by the Coalition government.

About the book

Employment Tribunals were originally intended to be easily accessible, informal, speedy and inexpensive. But according to the authors of this report, policies being pursued by the Coalition are putting access to justice beyond the means of most working people.

Justice Deferred maps out in a concise, easy to read, accessible style and language, the ideologically driven path being pursued by the Coalition Government. It provides a critical guide to changes in employment tribunal rules and procedures including the introduction of fees, the lifting of caps on costs, the ending of witness expenses, the removal of wing members, the end of statutory discrimination questionnaires and more. The authors also look at other changes including unfair dismissal and redundancy rights, the introduction of “employee-ownership” contracts (the rights-for-shares scheme), the notion of “protected conversations” and changes to the Equality and Human Rights Commission. The authors conclude “These changes, taken collectively, represent the biggest change to employment law since the introduction of the right to claim unfair dismissal more than 40 years ago”. Despite the enormity of the changes, “neither party to the Coalition included them in their manifesto and there is no popular mandate for them”.

This publication offers a chilling reminder of the extent to which access to justice is being systematically shut down by the Coalition government.

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Reviews

Adrian Weir, Assistant Chief of Staff at Unite, writing in the Morning Star

Although originally dismissed as "bonkers" by Vince Cable's people what Renton and Macey show is how many of Adrian "Mr Wonga" Beecroft's proposals have found their way onto the statute book.

With all of this and more to come, the key lesson of this timely booklet is that if you seek workplace justice, join a union because the law won't help. Read more...

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