No change to law on dress codes

The government has now published its response to the House of Commons Petitions Committee and Women and Equalities Committees’ joint report on dress codes in the workplace. The response states that the government takes the issue of discriminatory dress codes very seriously, but has rejects any change in the law.

The report was the result of a petition signed by more than 150,000 people last year, after a temporary worker was turned away from work for refusing to wear high heels as her employer’s dress code required.

The government proposes new guidance (expected to be published in the summer), an awareness campaign, and “persuasive enforcement” by the Equalities and Human Rights Commission.

Report by Citizens Advice on “Sharp practice at work: Paid holiday”

This month, Citizens Advice published a report analysing problems workers face in accessing paid holiday. In 2016/17, Citizens Advice advised on over 10,000 enquiries about paid holiday and its web page on paid holiday had 300,000 views from 260,000 unique visitors.

Three issues Citizens Advice sees of “sharp practice” are:

  • a poor understanding of holiday entitlements for insecure workers
  • some employers bogusly claiming that their workers are self-employed, preventing workers from claiming their rightful holiday entitlement
  • other employers failing to give employees the full amount, or sometimes any, of the paid holiday to which they are legally entitled

Citizens Advice suggests creating a Fair Work Authority to enforce labour market laws, introducing a clear, statutory definition of self-employment available via an online test, and better access to employment tribunals – including reducing tribunal fees so that workers pay less to enforce their rights to paid holiday.

Modern Slavery Act – staying ahead of the field

As the next major deadline for statements to be produced approaches, Colin Godfrey reviews the story so far, what to expect and provides some tips on compliance.