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Purpose of detriment for taking part in union activities is a subjective question (University College London v Brown)

Purpose of detriment for taking part in union activities is a subjective question (University College London v Brown)
Published on: 13 January 2021
Published by: LexisPSL
  • Purpose of detriment for taking part in union activities is a subjective question (University College London v Brown)
  • What are the practical implications of this judgment?
  • What is the relevant background?
  • Background law
  • Background facts
  • The decision of the employment tribunal
  • What did the EAT decide?
  • Case details

Article summary

Employment analysis: When considering whether an employer has subjected a worker to a detriment with the sole or main purpose of penalising them for (or preventing or deterring them from) taking part in the activities of an independent trade union (or making use of trade union services at an appropriate time) under section 146 of the Trade Union and Labour Relations (Consolidation) Act 1992: (1) the question of the employer’s ‘sole or main purpose’ is a subjective question, to be judged simply by enquiring into what was in the mind of the employer at the time, and (2) the question of whether the worker qualifies for protection is an objective question to be decided by the employment tribunal answering questions arising from (a) the status of the organisation as ‘an independent trade union’, (b) the phrase ‘at an appropriate time’, (c) the phrase ‘making use of trade union services’, and (d) the phrase ‘taking part in the activities of an independent trade union’, according to the EAT. or take a trial to read the full analysis.

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