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Are employment tribunals a barrier to justice? : an observer’s perspective

Lord, JD and Redfern, D 2015, Are employment tribunals a barrier to justice? : an observer’s perspective , in: BAM 2015 - The value of pluralism in advancing management research, education and practice, 8-10 September 2015, Portsmouth.

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Abstract

The UK Employment Tribunal System (ETS) is ‘broken’ and in need of reform according to the British Chamber of Commerce (BCC) (2011) and the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) (2011). Both are organisations, that represent and lobby in the interests of employers, have carried out research which purports to show tribunals are too alacritous in accepting spurious claims and that the cost to defend a claim is higher than settling. In contrast the Trades Union Congress (TUC) (2011) and ETS commentators have consistently argued that the tribunal system favours employers through its judgments and inability to compensate, and needs to be reformed to address this lack of fairness, specifically the remedies awarded to claimants can be minimal in terms of potential career earnings, and the psychological impact of the tribunal process can be very damaging. Focusing on three areas of social justice identified by Rawls (2005) and Cropanzano, Stein and Nadisic (2011) this study argues that although the ETS is an important mechanism for adjudicating workplace disputes, there are major concerns regarding the inclination to defend cases and the willingness to follow a claim to a full tribunal hearing. Implications are drawn from these superficially similar viewpoints as to how the government can continually monitor, evaluate and reform the tribunal system. The study considers the proposition that tribunals should favour employees, as they have more to lose from the process, and it implies that if justice is both carried out and also perceived to be administered, the ETS has to be continually modernised to meet the expectations of those involved with the process.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Employment tribunal, Employment relationship, Dispute resolution
Themes: Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Schools > Salford Business School > Business and Management Research Centre
Journal or Publication Title: BAM 2015
Publisher: British Academy of Management
Refereed: Yes
Related URLs:
Funders: Salford Business School
Depositing User: JD Lord
Date Deposited: 08 Oct 2015 17:07
Last Modified: 29 Oct 2015 00:46
URI: http://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/36783

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