Policy News Journal - 2016-17

The Chartered Institute of Payroll Professionals ……………………………………………………………Policy News Journal

Ethnicity Pay Gap Bill 13 June 2016

A Bill has begun its passage through the Houses of Parliament which will require employers with 250 or more employees to report on the remuneration of employees for the purpose of showing whether there are pay differences for those from different ethnic groups. Further details will be available as the Bill progresses through parliament but what we know at the moment is that the Ethnicity Pay Gap Bill may not require an employer with fewer than 250 employees to report information, nor any organisation specified in Schedule 19 to the Equality Act 2010; public authorities, government departments or part of the armed forces. Regulations may specify what information about employers must be included in the report; what information about employees must be included in the report; the way in which an employer must calculate the number of its employees; when and how frequently employers must report and the form and manner in which employers must report.

Regulations may not require an employer to report more frequently than once in every 12 month period, subsequent to the first report.

When the Bill becomes an Act of law it will extend to England and Wales.

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What does Brexit mean for UK employment law? 17 August 2016

Read an informative article from law firm Lewis Silkin which considers the implications for employment law in the UK following the vote on 23 June to leave the EU.

James Davies from law firm Lewis Silkin has written an informative article which considers some of the potential implications of the UK leaving the EU for employers and employees.

On 23 June 2016, the UK voted to leave the European Union. The implications for the workplace could be huge, as a significant proportion of our employment law comes from Brussels. Once out of the EU, the UK government could in theory repeal discrimination laws, collective consultation obligations, transfer of undertakings regulations, family leave, working time rules and duties to agency workers among other laws. But would the government really do that? Possible implications of a Brexit Many EU employment protections, such as equal pay, race and disability discrimination laws, and the right of return from maternity leave existed in some form in the UK before being imposed by Europe. It seems unlikely that a UK government would rescind rights that predate European laws. Another reason that the government might be reluctant to repeal employment law protection is that much of it is regarded, by employers, employees and even by politicians, as a good thing. Employment rights such as family leave, discrimination law and the right to paid holiday are now widely accepted; indeed, family leave rights in this country go further than required by EU directives. One very pragmatic reason for the UK to continue to follow European employment law is that, it will wish to stay in some sort of trading relationship with the EU, its biggest export partner, albeit not full EU membership. The arrangements that Switzerland and countries in the European Economic Area, such as Norway, have with the EU involve adherence to a significant amount of EU employment law. Any trade agreement between the UK and the EU is likely to require something similar. It will take some time for the UK to extricate itself from the EU. Once the UK has given the EU formal notification of its withdrawal, there will be a two year period in which the parties will negotiate the terms of departure and possibly put in place new trading arrangements. Some commentators believe it will take considerably longer than that to agree exit terms but, unless both the UK and the European Council agree to extend negotiations the UK will simply cease to be a member of the EU at this point. Even after the process has been completed and the UK has left the EU (and assuming no other restrictions imposed by another free trade agreement), European law might continue to apply in one way or another because disentangling it from UK law will take some time. Some EU-derived laws are contained in secondary legislation


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