Worker Protection Bill Back on Track?
The Worker Protection Bill which sought to bring new protections against sexual harassment in the workplace, appeared to have been dropped following concerns by government back benchers about the impact on employers. There had also been concerns expressed about potential impact on free speech arising from the provisions of the Bill which would have made employers liable for third party harassment. However, following significant amendments being agreed in the House of Lords last week, it now looks like the government will support the Bill again so that progress can be made. The amendments made by the House of Lords include:-
- Removing the provisions which made employers liable for harassment of employees by third parties and
- Amending the new duty to prevent sexual harassment so that rather than a very stringent requirement to take “all reasonable steps” this will be replaced by a pro-active duty to take “reasonable steps” which is a lower test.
The Bill will continue its way through the parliamentary process. Scottish Engineering will update members if the Bill is passed into law.