The government should not put a price on justice
The Department of Justice announcement that workers will be charged to bring employment tribunal claims “denies many workers their right to justice” – UNISON said today.
The UK’s largest union condemned the move, which it says will also cause severe difficulties for multiple claims such as those it has lodged seeking equal pay for women workers. Many women would have lost out on equal pay claims if they had to pay money up front to access employment tribunals. UNISON said that by excluding those who do not have the cash to pay for justice, the Department is opening the floodgates for unscrupulous employers to take advantage of workers, knowing that they cannot afford to speak out.
UNISON general secretary Dave Prentis said:
“This is a disgraceful move that tips the scales of justice heavily towards employers, and denies legal redress to those who do not have the cash to pay for it.
“Because we do not have class actions in this country, UNISON has been involved in lodging equal pay claims for hundreds and thousands of women. If those women did not have union backing, and had to pay up front for access to justice, many would have lost out.
“It beggars belief that this decision has been made when implementing these charges will be complicated, expensive to the point of grossly wasteful, and contrary to workers’ rights.
“Workers in the UK are already subject to the toughest employment laws in Europe, and this move represents another blow against workers’ employment rights at a time when they have never been more needed or valuable.”
UNISON’s full consultation response can be found here: http://www.unison.org.uk/activists/pages_view.asp?did=14205