13 October 2010 #Employment
According to the Law Gazette, yes. An article published on it`s website last week predicts that Tribunal`s will ‘struggle to cope` as they are ‘submerged` by a surge in cases stemming from the Equality Act 2010.
In particular, claims relating to associative and perceptive discrimination, and disability discrimination are expected to increase as protection is widened. Claims relating to pay secrecy clauses in employment contracts are also expected to contribute to the increase.
Pam Loch, managing director of Loch Associates, said: ‘The tribunals may be submerged by claims testing the new provisions around discrimination by perception. Employees who are harassed because of a perceived disability or sexual orientation can now take their case to court and win damages.`
Christl Hughes, chair of the Association of Women Solicitors, said: ‘Parts of the new act, such as the outlawing of pay secrecy clauses, make it easier for female workers to know whether they are being paid less than male colleagues for the same work. Although much progress has been made, there remains a substantial pay gap between the sexes in the workplace, including within the solicitors profession.`
Tribunal`s are already struggling to cope with an ever increasing case load. Buddy would be interested to hear from members who have had problems due to overlisting of claims and long delays in getting to tribunal hearings due to the increase in claims.