The UK Law Society Gazette has cited an employment law firm’s research that the number of sex discrimination claims going to employment tribunals has reached the highest level in four years — up from 38% two years ago.
However, “The overall number of claims has fallen by 80% since the introduction of employment tribunal fees in July 2013, but this appears to have mostly affected lower-value claims, the firm found.”
“Lower value” claims?
On June 27th we noted that the UK Ministry of Justice had just released employment tribunal stats for the first quarter of 2014, and according to Michael Rubinstein Publishing, there has been a “huge fall in employment tribunal claims as a result of the introduction of fees to bring a case and have it heard.”
All of our UK experts explained the fee, and/or noted that the stats were a predictable result of the increase in the fee. Many readers deplored this fee, one saying that “poverty is on the rise and there is only justice for those who can pay,” and tell us that the fee is under attack by a trade union in the UK.
Oh, those “lower value” claims.
The UK’s Daily MailOnline’s take on this, however, was in stark relief to our readers’ — “Hallelujah! The tribunal gravy train’s derailed: As workers are made to pay £1,200 fee, discrimination cases plunge by 75%. Sex discrimination claims have fallen by 80% and race claims by 60% …The multi-billion pound industry built on vexatious discrimination claims against employers has virtually collapsed, it emerged yesterday. … The spectacular decline follows a simple reform introduced by Justice Secretary Chris Grayling last summer – the charging of fees to workers who want to make a claim against their employer.”
Reform? Or retreat?