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Legal challenges in the headlines

View profile for Chloe Pereira
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Taking a look at some legal challenges in the headlines, including mandatory vaccinations, furlough and short term working and ethnicity pay gap reporting.

Mandatory vaccines

Last month we reported on the open letter sent to the CQC, among others, claiming that the Regulations requiring care home workers to be vaccinated from 11 November 2021, is unlawful and unenforceable.

The mandatory vaccination requirement for care home workers is being challenged in judicial review proceedings launched on 9 September. They are brought on five grounds, that the Regulations are:

  1. incompatible with laws prohibiting the enforcement of mandatory vaccines
  2. interfere with the public’s right to “bodily integrity” and are severe, unnecessary and disproportionate
  3. will disproportionately impact women and those who identify as Black/Caribbean/Black British, contravening Human Rights
  4. irrational and will lead to shortages in both frontline and non-frontline care workers

At the same time, the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC) as published a consultation on making flu and covid jabs compulsory for workers in the wider health and social care sector. The consultation is open until 22 October 2021 – if you want to have a say, visit the online survey site.

Ethnicity pay gap reporting

The CIPD is calling for the government to require compulsory ethnicity pay gap reporting by large employers from April 2023. This follows a number of calls since the government consulted on the same in 2018.

Furlough and short-time working

The TUC is calling on the government to extend the furlough scheme further and introduce a permanent short-time working scheme. It says this will help protect jobs and workers in economically challenging times. This comes in the wake of a poll showing that low-income worker rarely have the option to work from home and suffered with lower living standards during the pandemic compared to higher income workers.

The TUC is also calling for a ban on zero hours contract and an increase of the national minimum wage to £10.