Friday 26 October 2007

Legal ruling on redundancy consultation

There's been a lot of media coverage of a court ruling on the case:

UK Coal Mining Ltd v (1) National Union of Mineworkers (2) British Association of Colliery Management - EAT 27.9.07

In the past, many employers have regarded redundancy consultation as being merely about the impact on employees of their business decisions, and regarded the business decisions themselves as being no business of a trade union - the "management's right to manage".

The case appears to widen the duty to consult to include the reasons for the redundancies. Given that the reason for the redundancies was the closure of the pit, this meant consultation had to include the reason for the closure itself.

How ironic that it is a court decision that has begun to narrow the gap between UK law and most other European countries, while the New Labour government leaves anti-union legislation in place and refuses to introduce a level-playing-field in employment rights.

It will be interesting to see some considered analysis of the judgement. Initial coverage includes:

1 comment:

John Gray said...

Thanks Ian

I must have missed the media fuss (but I wondered why my RO was so pleased about this case - I hadn't opened up her email link yet).

This may make employers think again about some cases, espcially when they invent phoney reviews in order to get rid of people they don't like.

It won’t stop them but they will have to be more careful about their justification.