Employment Rights in the COVID-19 Crisis

With people calling these extraordinary times, as normal in human endeavour there are those that rise and sink to the occasion.

Over the last ten years government policies affecting employment rights has be based on the assertion that discrimination is a rare and tragic consequence of mis understandings in in workplace. Not surprising given the backdrop of a post-racial, disability positive narrative. As a result of this there have been massive cuts  to advice services in addition to large scale closures of tribunal courts which often mean that hearings require in excess of hundred mile round trips from Northamptonshire.

In the last few days more and more of us have been on social media talking about the employment practices of our own employers as well as employers that we buy services from.   Tales have ranged from those of employers demonstrating respect and consideration to stories of employees being  let down in a very real hour of need for themselves and their families, often despite years of loyal service.

If you are wanting to self isolate because you or a family member are displaying symptoms of COV-19, the NHS have developed a quick and easy self isolation self certificate. You can fill it in an it will cover you for up to 7 days before you complete it. You will have to speak to 111 to get agreement that your position is in line with government advice to self isolate.

You can use it if you have symptoms of COVID-19 and 111 have advised to self isolateyou have symptoms of COVID-19 and have been told by a health professional to self isolate or if you live with someone that has symptoms of COVID-19 and want to self isolate.

We can offer  advice if you are being asked by your employer to work and you do not think that this is safe if you believe you are being treated less favourably on the basis of a disability, pre-existing health condition, pregnancy or maternity condition. If you are refusing to go to work because you believe it to be unsafe, please ask  for copies of risk assessments, in writing, before you do this. You should also put in writing any concerns that you might have. You might also cite section 44 of the Employment Rights Act 1996. 

If you are looking for advice about discrimination particularly relating to employment please email us on info@northamptonshirerec.org.uk.

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