Bullying and harassment are generally considered to be unwelcome and unwarranted conduct that results in detrimental treatment. Harassment occurs where, on the grounds of sex, race, sexual orientation, gender reassignment, race, religion or belief, disability or age, one person engages in unwanted conduct that violates another person’s dignity or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that person. While there is no statutory definition of bullying, ACAS which is the conciliation service describes it as “offensive, intimidating, malicious or insulting behaviour, an abuse or misuse of power through means intended to undermine, humiliate, denigrate or injure the recipient”.
Employees who wish to start proceedings for bullying must either rely on legislation that covers discrimination and harassment, or resign and claim constructive unfair dismissal. It is not possible for an employee to bring a free-standing claim for bullying in an employment tribunal. Instead, an employee who alleges that they have been subjected to bullying or harassment at work might bring a tribunal claim for: negligence for breach of the employer’s duty of care resulting in personal injury breach of an implied or express term of the employment contract unfair dismissal where the breach of contract amounts to a constructive dismissal breach of a statutory duty or discrimination or harassment under the discrimination legislation.
Recent case law means that an employer should also be prepared for a claim under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 . We are able to deal with all claims for harassment and bullying and these include:
Sexual Harassment – Sexual harassment is unlawful and is defined under the Employment Equality (Sex Discrimination) Regulations 2005 as any unwanted conduct that has the purpose or effect of violating a person’s dignity or the creation of an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating, or offensive environment. It also includes any unwanted verbal, non-verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that violates a person’s dignity at work.
Racial Harassment – Harassment is defined as unwanted conduct which violates the victims dignity or which creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them. Following changes introduced by the EA 2010, these regulations apply to claims relating to race, ethnic, and national origins, and colour and nationality.
Disability Related Harassment – This is defined as unwanted conduct that violates the victims dignity or which creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for them.
Age Related Harassment – Age related harassment is now illegal under the new Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006 which came into force on the 1st October 2006. Under the regulations, a person is unlawfully harassed for a reason relating to their age if they are subjected to unwanted conduct that has the purpose or effect of violating their dignity or of creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment.
Please contact us on tel. 020 7228 2020 or 020 7095 0930 email firstname.lastname@example.org for further information.