Tag Archives: health & safety

Employee Wellbeing Programmes (UK)

With a clear link between increased employee wellbeing (both in terms of physical and mental health) and reduced sickness absence, many employers may use renewed New Year ambitions to adopt or promote employee wellbeing programmes. Businesses have introduced measures including step challenges with free pedometers, fruit ‘desk drops’ and health monitoring stations in the workplace. … Continue Reading

“A descent into Hell, but less interesting” – can you sue for being bored at work?

The Guardian Online reports the case of Paris resident M. Frederic Desnard last week. He is claiming over £280,000 in compensation for a nervous breakdown allegedly caused by his managerial job at French perfumiers Interparfum.  However, no tale of excessive pressure and punishing working hours, this one.  Instead, M.Desnard claims that his job was so … Continue Reading

French Supreme Court decides that failure to display workplace rules rendered dismissal unfair

A recent case before the French Supreme Court acts as a stark warning to employers of the importance of complying with the requirements in the French Labour Code to display their internal rules in the workplace. After the discovery of empty bottles of alcohol in the employees’ changing room, an employer required one of its … Continue Reading

Managers in Australia beware! – the price of seniority may be personal liability

Health and safety laws rolled out around Australia since 2012 have imposed a new positive duty on company officers to exercise due diligence to ensure their “person conducting a business or undertaking” (PCBU – usually the corporate employer) is compliant. The term “officer” extends beyond the PCBU’s executives, directors and secretaries to any person who: … Continue Reading

UK sewer worker kicks up stink over health and safety dismissal

In Newbound –v- Thames Water the Court of Appeal has recently upheld the ruling of the Employment Tribunal that Mr Newbound had been unfairly dismissed for gross misconduct despite his breaching company health and safety rules. The case highlights the difficulties faced by employers trying to enforce compliance with new health and safety procedures, but … Continue Reading

UK High Court gives useful recap on liability for stress-induced psychiatric illness in the workplace (Part 3)

In the first two parts of this series (part 1, part 2) we looked at how the Courts still regard the 2002 judgment in Hatton –v- Sutherland as the definitive statement on the law for liability for stress-induced psychiatric injury in the workplace.  However, although still commanding respect in relation to breach of duty and … Continue Reading

UK High Court gives useful recap on liability for stress-induced psychiatric illness in the workplace (Part 2)

In Part 1 of this piece https://www.employmentlawworldview.com/uk-high-court-gives-useful-recap-on-liability-for-stress-induced-psychiatric-illness-in-the-workplace-part-1/ we considered the requirement of foreseeability as a condition of establishing an employer’s liability for stress-related psychiatric harm.  Here we look at the other main ingredient, a breach of duty by the employer. It is not enough that an employee’s illness is as a matter of medical fact … Continue Reading

UK High Court gives useful recap on liability for stress-induced psychiatric illness in the workplace (Part 1)

Every so often, there comes along a case which becomes the new baseline by which decisions in a particular field are made.  In relation to employer liability for psychiatric illness caused by workplace stress, that case is Hatton -v- Sutherland in 2002, still going strong after 13 years and most recently upheld by the High … Continue Reading

Ebola outbreak in Spain – what should employers be doing?

The sad news that a Spanish nurse has contracted the Ebola virus is shocking but perhaps not unexpected.  It was inevitably only a matter of time before the virus spread beyond West Africa.  With the World Health Organisation predicting further Ebola cases among medical staff in Europe and the US, what steps should be employers … Continue Reading

The Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Bill – a new low in UK Legislative proposals

Anything designed to reduce the burden of regulation on employers must be a good idea, right?  Well, not necessarily, no, and certainly not the proposed Social Action, Responsibility and Heroism Bill, a legislative proposal defective from conception to execution in almost every way it is possible to imagine.   The Bill is designed, says proud sponsor … Continue Reading
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