Need to know: employment issues

Are you up to date with the latest employment issues? Business support group The Federation of Small Businesses recently commented that the rate of change of employment law makes it virtually impossible for even the most conscientious employer to keep up.


Are you up to date with the latest employment issues? Business support group The Federation of Small Businesses recently commented that the rate of change of employment law makes it virtually impossible for even the most conscientious employer to keep up.

Are you up to date with the latest employment issues? Business support group The Federation of Small Businesses recently commented that the rate of change of employment law makes it virtually impossible for even the most conscientious employer to keep up.

And a survey by business advice firm Peninsula has revealed that most small businesses believe employment law is hampering their growth. And almost two-thirds of those surveyed said they were completely oblivious to changes that took place last year

So for this year, hotly debated issues include equal rights for women, age discrimination and bullying in the workplace, with claims that businesses are unprepared for forthcoming rules (from October 2006) stating that it will be illegal for firms to refuse someone a job, promotion, training or benefits on the grounds of age.

The Equal Opportunities Commission has been calling for equal rights for women at work, saying they are suffering significant discrimination and inequality in the workplace. It has published two reports; one shows that employers are not adopting flexible enough working practices and are failing to recognise womenÂ’s responsibilities away from their jobs.

The other report suggests that almost half of all pregnant working women experience some form of discrimination. Click here to find out more about these reports

On a similar note, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) is calling for more employer awareness on the subject of equal pay audits. A recent CIPD survey showed that the majority of small businesses did not plan an equal pay audit because they presume that their pay systems are non-discriminatory.

“There is still a huge lack of awareness about how equal pay audits can expose underlying bias in the way organisations value female employees. When employees don’t feel valued it destroys the way they feel about their employer and damages the trust between employers and workers. This undermines staff commitment, motivation and retention,” Dianah Worman, diversity adviser at the CIPD.

(10/2/2005)

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