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employment law

can someone please help me with my coursework!! how would you structure it and if someone wants to give a brief plan please do! thankyou

Aisha, Berta and Chris work for Thrashers Ltd, which owns a chain of off-licences. They all work as counter staff in the Oxford branch where the management has been concerned about persistent stock shortages. Aisha has worked for the company for 16 months, Berta joined the company as a full-time employee 3 years ago, and Chris joined the company as a full-time employee 7 years ago.

Aisha is 22 years old and is paid £9.00 per hour and her job title is “casual counter-staff”. Her contract requires her to be available “as and when required for shifts but with no guarantee of any work”. She works 4-hour shifts when called in to work by head office and she averages 4 shifts per week. There have only been one or two weeks when she has had no work offered at all.

Chris is employed as “counter staff / warehouse assistant” at the Oxford branch and he is paid £12.00 per hour. He works primarily in the shop, serving customers, but is occasionally asked to spend an afternoon in the warehouse helping to move stock. Aisha and Berta are not required to do this task.

When Aisha challenged her employer to explain the difference in hourly pay between her and Chris, the employer defended the difference as follows:-

o Warehouse assistants are occasionally required to work a night shift as part of their regular pattern of work and the company assumed that as she had a young child to care for she would not want to be obliged to do night shifts.
o Few women apply for jobs in the warehouse assistants due to the anti social hours, which explains why all the staff are male and why the hourly rate is higher than for “counter staff”.
o Chris has been with the company longer than Aisha and part of the difference represents his longer service.

The company introduced a new automated stock control system in an attempt to identify the stock losses. Berta found the system very difficult to operate and made many mistakes when trying to enter information into the system. After 5 weeks operation of the new automated system Berta was called to see the shop manager who told her that she had been too slow to learn the new system and that she had no future with the company. She was so upset that she left the premises in tears and did not return to work the next week. At the end of that week, Head Office assumed that she had resigned and sent her a letter confirming the end of her employment and the wages due up to her last day of work.

Aisha has been off sick for 2 weeks and has now written to say that she needs an operation and will not be available for at least one further month. The shop manager replied that, in which case, she need not bother to return, and sent her two weeks pay in lieu of notice, together with a letter telling her that her employment contract was terminated. Aisha believes that the company have been looking for an excuse to dismiss her ever since she filed a claim under the Equality Act 2010 on account of the pay differentials described above. Her claim is still waiting to be heard by a Tribunal

After running the new system for two months stock losses are continuing. The shop manager called Chris to an interview and asked him to explain the continual stock shortages. Chris denied any wrongdoing on his part but had no explanation for the stock losses. The manager told him that he was dismissed with two months pay in lieu of notice and is told not to return to the shop.

Advise Aisha, Berta, and Chris as to the legal issues that may have arisen from the above facts.

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