January 31, 2022
By Owen John
Amongst the key questions will be whether more employers decide to introduce mandatory vaccination and whether some decide to cut sick pay entitlement for unvaccinated staff (as some large employers like IKEA, Ocado and Next have done recently). We’ll also start to see the first swathe of claims reaching the Employment Tribunal where employers have implemented “no jab no job” policies. Watch this space for how those pan out.
The return to the office?
Whatever Government rule changes happen around home or office work, the key issue for employers is still going to be that they have a duty of care to look out for the health & safety of their staff. As such, risk assessments (whether that be of an office or someone’s home working setup) are still going to be crucial.
Extra bank holiday
To mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, there will be an extra bank holiday in 2022 on Friday 3 June. The late May bank holiday has also been moved to Thursday 2 June to make a four-day weekend.
Technically, not all employees will automatically be entitled to this extra bank holiday, because it will all depend on the exact wording of their employment contracts. For example, if an employee’s contract simply says that they’re entitled to a certain number of days annual leave plus the usual bank holidays, there is an argument to say that 3 June is not a “usual” bank holiday for this purpose. Lots of employers will of course simply give their employees the benefit of the doubt, but others (particularly those who are struggling with staffing shortages) may want to take a harder line. Reviewing the terms of employment contracts well in advance of 3 June is crucial.
National Minimum Wage increases
From 1 April 2022, the rates of National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage will go up as follows:
Flexible working requests for all
The Government is expected to publish plans this year for employees to be able to request flexible working from the first day of their employment. At the moment, employees must have been employed for 26 weeks before they can make a request.
Please get in touch with Owen John on 02920 829 118 or firstname.lastname@example.org for a free, no-obligation chat about how he can guide you on some of these changes.
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