Human Resources: Legislation in the workplace By Robyn Macgregor and Lisa McGeehan
Contents <ul><li>Define: Legislation in the workplace </li></ul><ul><li>Equal Opportunities Equal Pay Act 1970 Sex Discrimination Act 1975 Disability Discrimination Act 1995 </li></ul><ul><li>Employment Protection Employment Act 2002 Employment Relations Act 2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Health and Safety Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 Office, Shops and Railways Act 1963 </li></ul>
Define: Legislation in the workplace <ul><li>The legal responsibilities of an organisation. They are continually updated, and this requires specialist knowledge – a main role of the HRM department. They ensure that the business is fully aware of any new legislation and make sure it is implemented. The dep't must ensure that all the organisation’s policies are within the law that affect two main areas: employment , and health & safety . </li></ul>
Equal Opportunities Equal Pay Act 1970 (implemented 1975) Introduced to ensure men and women would receive the same pay and conditions for doing ‘broadly similar’ work. Until then, employers could pay woman less than men. The Act is monitored by the Equal Opportunities Commission, who have found that some employers still break the law, paying woman less money. ‘ Close The Gap’ campaign Equal pay was meant to be sorted out over 30 years ago, yet remains a problem for woman in Scotland. It is ironic that the act was introduced in 1970, giving employers 5years to sort their pay systems out before the implementation in 1975 – yet the pay gap still lingers on.
Sex Discrimination Act 1975 [and the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003] Introduced to ensure that men and woman are treated equally and fairly in the workplace. Although most cases tend to be about discrimination against females, it applies equally to males. It covers a wide range of issues. There are two types of sex discrimination: Direct Indirect Where an individual is directly discriminated against because of their sex. Discrimination is where the actions of the employer adversely affects a large portion of males or females. This covers recruitment, treatment at work and dismissal.
Disability Discrimination Act 1995 Deals with discrimination against an employee or potential employee because of their disability. It can again be direct or indirect. Companies must be careful when preparing job adverts, introducing working practices and even in their company advertising, ensure that they are all within the current legislation. It is also possible that the employer could be sued under the Human Rights Act 1998.
Employment Protection Employment Act 2002 Gives additional rights to the Employment Rights Act 1996; where employees are entitled to maternity and paternity leave, termination of employment, Sunday working, written payslip. This extends the rights, giving mothers and fathers with children under six, or disabled children under 18, the right to request flexible working arrangements. Employment Relations Act 2004 Deals mainly with employee relations and the operation of the statutory recognition procedure for trade unions; the law on industrial action ballots and ballot notices; unfair dismissal, and grievance and disciplinary hearings.
Health and Safety Health and Safety at Work Act 1974 Office, Shops and Railway Premises Act 1963 Aims to: Raise the standards of health and safety for all individuals at work Protect the public whose activities may be put at risk by others in the workplace. Employers’ Duties : Ensure all machinery is properly maintained All hazardous substances are dealt with properly All staff are trained and informed of potential dangers Ensure the environment is safe and non-hazardous to the health of the employees. Employees’ Duties: Behave in a reasonable manner, take responsibility for their own actions Follow all instructions, co-operate with employers Accept training where appropriate Office, Shops and Railways Act covers the right to minimum working temperatures, toilet facilities, first aid, physical space and levels of cleanliness.