Labour Research April 2002

Features: Law queries

Law queries

* We have recently won recognition through the statutory scheme. Our employers say that while they accept that they have to recognise the union they do not like the rep we have elected and are refusing to deal with him. They say that they have the right to veto our choice of rep. Is this true?

If an employer decides not to recognise a particular union rep this can amount to action short of dismissal for the purpose of deterring that individual from taking part in trade union activities, according to the McCoid Employment Appeal Tribunal case.

If your employer had agreed voluntarily to recognise the union he could de-recognise it but could not continue to recognise it while taking action against a particular union member.

Since you have won recognition through the statutory route your employers do not even have the right to move to get the union de-recognised, at least for the next three years.

More information: FW Farnsworth v McCoid [1998] IRLR 362