LRD Booklets September 2015

Disciplinary and grievance procedures - a practical guide for trade union reps

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Introduction

Introduction
 [pages 4-5] (579 words)

This LRD booklet is intended to provide practical advice and support for union reps or members who are facing a disciplinary or considering whether ...
Open access

Chapter 1

1. The Acas Code of Practice and Guidance on discipline and grievance
 [ch 1: page 6] (295 words)

The key resource for union reps representing individual members in both disciplinary and grievance hearings is the Acas Code of Practice on ...
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Core principles of the Acas Code
 [ch 1: pages 6-7] (244 words)

Collective grievances
 [ch 1: page 7] (43 words)

Disciplinary sanctions under the Code
 [ch 1: page 7] (56 words)

Separate procedures
 [ch 1: page 7] (65 words)

Evaluation of the Code
 [ch 1: page 7] (64 words)

Chapter 2

2. Establishing a disciplinary procedure
 [ch 2: pages 8-9] (505 words)

Workers need to know what standards are expected of them and what is likely to happen if those standards are not met. It is not appropriate to ...
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The legal obligation to have a disciplinary procedure 
 [ch 2: page 9] (137 words)

Developing a disciplinary procedure
 [ch 2: page 9] (239 words)

Negotiating disciplinary procedures 
 [ch 2: page ] (1,105 words)

Acas Guidance on developing good discipline and grievance procedures 
 [ch 2: pages 12-13] (202 words)

Specifying unacceptable conduct
 [ch 2: pages 13-14] (484 words)

Gross misconduct
 [ch 2: pages 14-15] (584 words)

Failure to follow an agreed procedure
 [ch 2: page 15] (64 words)

Contractual disciplinary procedures
 [ch 2: page 16] (176 words)

Important implied contractual duties 
 [ch 2: page 16] (152 words)

Chapter 3

3. Informal and formal procedures
 [ch 3: pages 18-19] (480 words)

The Acas Guidance recommends that minor misconduct or unsatisfactory performance is usually best dealt with informally with “a quiet word”. ...
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Moving from informal to formal stage
 [ch 3: page 19] (254 words)

Chapter 4

4. Investigation 
 [ch 4: page 19] (219 words)

At this stage, TUC guidance outlines the typical role played by a union rep representing a member facing a disciplinary as follows: 
 ...
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Who should carry out the investigation?
 [ch 4: page 19] (165 words)

Investigating the charges
 [ch 4: pages 20-22] (1,061 words)

An investigation must be carried out promptly 
 [ch 4: page 22] (161 words)

Disciplinary investigations and criminal charges
 [ch 4: pages 22-23] (323 words)

What if an investigation is oppressive?
 [ch 4: pages 23-24] (539 words)

Surveillance evidence
 [ch 4: page 24] (35 words)

The Data Protection Code
 [ch 4: pages 24-25] (256 words)

Human rights-based objections 
 [ch 4: pages 25-27] (855 words)

Anonymous evidence
 [ch 4: pages 27-29] (780 words)

Supporting a member during an investigation [ch 4: page 29] (180 words)

Gathering evidence to support the employee’s case
 [ch 4: pages 29-30] (270 words)

Ending the investigation
 [ch 4: page 30] (99 words)

Chapter 5

5. Suspension
 [ch 5: pages 31-33] (1,048 words)

It has become increasingly the “norm” to suspend employees when investigating allegations of gross misconduct. In Crawford v Suffolk Mental ...
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Chapter 6

6. Getting ready for the hearing
 [ch 6: pages 34-35] (500 words)

If, following the investigation, it is decided that there is a disciplinary case to answer, the employer must inform the employee. 
 ...
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Supporting evidence 
 [ch 6: page 35] (327 words)

Data Subject Access Request
 [ch 6: pages 35-36] (217 words)

Raising discrimination
 [ch 6: pages 36-37] (355 words)

Making secret recordings and the law
 [ch 6: pages 37-38] (774 words)

Chapter 7

7. A fair disciplinary hearing
 [ch 7: page 39] (87 words)

The next stage is the disciplinary hearing. 
 ...
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Attending the hearing
 [ch 7: pages 39-41] (1,006 words)

Arranging for a companion
 [ch 7: page 41] (222 words)

Special hearing arrangements
 [ch 7: pages 41-43] (469 words)

Adjustments for pregnancy and maternity
 [ch 7: page 43] (99 words)

No bias
 [ch 7: pages 43-44] (283 words)

Cross-examination
 [ch 7: page 44] (191 words)

At the hearing 
 [ch 7: pages 44-45] (374 words)

Asking for an adjournment 
 [ch 7: page 45] (83 words)

Note-takers 
 [ch 7: pages 45-46] (358 words)

Recording devices
 [ch 7: page 46] (83 words)

Overlapping disciplinary and grievance procedures
 [ch 7: pages 46-47] (513 words)

The band of reasonable responses
 [ch 7: page 48] (316 words)

General arguments to make in disciplinaries
 [ch 7: pages 48-49] (156 words)

Precedent and consistency
 [ch 7: page 49] (332 words)

Apologising
 [ch 7: page 50] (82 words)

Some typical disciplinary situations 
 [ch 7: pages 50-53] (991 words)

Chapter 8

8. The right to be accompanied
 [ch 8: page 54] (493 words)

All workers (not just employees) have the right to be accompanied at disciplinary and grievance hearings under section 10 of the Employment Relations ...
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Who can be a companion?
 [ch 5: page 55] (458 words)

Making a request to be accompanied 
 [ch 8: pages 56-57] (585 words)

Right to paid time off
 [ch 8: page 57] (205 words)

Right to time off for training
 [ch 8: pages 57-58] (258 words)

The role of the companion
 [ch 8: page 58] (158 words)

Enforcing the right to be accompanied
 [ch 8: pages 58-59] (135 words)

Facilities under the Acas Code on time off for trade union duties and activities
 [ch 8: page 59] (91 words)

Protection from victimisation
 [ch 8: page 59] (207 words)

Chapter 9

9. Decisions
 [ch 9: page 60] (106 words)

After the disciplinary hearing, the employer must decide whether to take disciplinary action, and must inform the employee. 
 ...
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Disciplinary penalties
 [ch 9: pages 60-62] (565 words)

Moving straight to a Final Warning
 [ch 9: page 62] (241 words)

Dismissal 
 [ch 9: pages 62-63] (234 words)

Keeping and monitoring records
 [ch 9: pages 63-64] (262 words)

Dismissals triggered by Final Warnings
 [ch 9: pages 64-65] (659 words)

How long should warnings remain live? 
 [ch 9: page 65] (100 words)

Lapsed warnings 
 [ch 9: pages 65-66] (179 words)

Can a final warning convert to dismissal on appeal?
 [ch 9: page 66] (91 words)

Chapter 10

10. Appeals
 [ch 10: page 67] (76 words)

All disciplinary procedures must provide a right to appeal. Failure to allow an appeal would be a breach of the Acas Code (see Chapter 1) and any ...
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To appeal or not to appeal
 [ch 10: pages 67-69] (933 words)

Preparing appeal grounds 
 [ch 10: page 69] (329 words)

Who hears the appeal?
 [ch 10: pages 69-70] (238 words)

Appeal hearings
 [ch 10: page 70] (179 words)

Other stages of appeal
 [ch 10: page 71] (98 words)

Effect of appeal on dismissal date
 [ch 10: page 71] (84 words)

Effect of appeal on further disciplinary action
 [ch 10: page 71] (125 words)

Chapter 11

11. Grievance procedures
 [ch 11: page 72] (85 words)

Like disciplinary procedures, grievance procedures must meet the requirements of the Acas Code (see Chapter 1). An unreasonable failure to raise a ...
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Time limits
 [ch 11: page 72] (113 words)

Establishing a grievance procedure
 [ch 11: pages 72-73] (195 words)

Drawing up grievance procedures
 [ch 11: page 73] (138 words)

Grievance procedures and third parties
 [ch 11: page 73] (97 words)

Raising a grievance
 [ch 11: pages 73-74] (218 words)

What if the employer fails to deal with the grievance?
 [ch 11: pages 74-75] (443 words)

The content of the grievance
 [ch 11: page 75] (357 words)

The grievance hearing and decision
 [ch 11: page 76] (343 words)

Appealing a grievance decision
 [ch 11: page 77] (233 words)

Status quo agreements
 [ch 11: page 77] (205 words)

Keeping and monitoring records
 [ch 11: page 78] (188 words)

Chapter 12

12. Organising around grievances and disciplinary issues
 [ch 12: pages 79-80] (536 words)

Unions have always understood that many workplace disputes can best be dealt with collectively through collective bargaining or collective grievances. ...
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Chapter 13

13. Mediation 
 [ch 13: page 81] (393 words)

In principle, the TUC, and several unions, recognise that mediation has a role to play in resolving workplace disputes as long as it is clearly ...
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Chapter 14

14. TUPE and discipline and grievance issues
 [ch 14: page 82] (103 words)

Increasingly, reps are asked to help members who face discipline and grievance issues against the backdrop of a TUPE transfer, for example a business ...
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Employee liability information 
 [ch 14: page 82] (63 words)

No right to refuse to employ employees with a poor disciplinary record
 [ch 14: page 82] (117 words)

Disciplinaries still unresolved at the transfer date
 [ch 14: page 82] (127 words)

Appeals
 [ch 14: page 83] (154 words)

Chapter 15

15. References and the disciplinary and grievance process
 [ch 15: page 84] (51 words)

An employer is not obliged to give a reference. Any reference provided must be true, accurate and fair, but there is no duty to be full and ...
Subscribers only

What is a reference allowed to say about disciplinary issues?
 [ch 15: page 84] (435 words)

Can an agreed reference be negotiated? 
 [ch 15: page 85] (116 words)

Victimisation 
 [ch 15: page 85] (71 words)

Chapter 16

Appendix
 [pages 86-87] (250 words)

A new Acas strategy paper, Building productivity in the UK, links productivity gains to effective early tackling of collective and individual ...
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Further information

Further information
 (672 words)

Copies of relevant statutes can be obtained online at: www.legislation.gov.uk. In Northern Ireland, legislation is available online from the Labour ...
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