News

Fatigue: a 'new' health and safety issue?

Fatigue can be defined as the temporary inability, or decrease in ability, or strong disinclination to respond to a situation, because of previous over-activity, either mental, emotional or physical.  Fatigue can create significant risks which need to be controlled in the workplace, and can significantly impact on worker ability to perform their work safely.

While fatigue is not a new concept, the law relating to fatigue in a health and safety concept is rapidly developing, and accordingly it needs to be on the radar for employers in this context.

Big $$ awarded by Human Rights Review Tribunal

A recent case in the Human Rights Review Tribunal (HRRT) between former conservative party leader, Colin Craig and his ex-press secretary, Rachel MacGregor highlights the financial implications an employer may incur if they fail to abide by the terms of a confidential settlement.

UPDATED: Trial Periods: What is required and how to safely dismiss

We have updated this article previously issued in Inform, in light of an Employment Relations Authority determination issued in late August 2016. 

In this case, the Authority found that the employer could not rely on the trial period because the relevant clause in the employment agreement did not specify the start date of the 90 day trial period.   The Authority found that it was not clear when the trial period would run from, and did not accept that it was obvious that it would take effect on the first day of the employee’s employment. 

Health & Safety: what's the difference between "hazard" and "risk"?

The new Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (“Act”) has been in place for several months now, and most businesses are getting to grips with the new terminology and concepts, including the two key concepts of hazard and risk explored in this article.

Informed Leadership in Health and Safety

Health and safety leadership is key to improving organisational health and safety culture, and it needs to be “informed leadership”.  That is, in order to lead health and safety in your business, you need to have a working understanding of the health and safety duties and obligations. 

Failure to adhere to minimum standards

A recent decision by the Employment Relations Authority (ERA) has highlighted the high financial cost of breaching the minimum employment law standards following investigation by a Labour Inspector.  Employers need to be aware that the Inspectorate is well resourced and proactively looking into minimum employment standards, including record keeping.  Media attention this week on the new statistics that 1 in 10 employees do not have written employment agreements signals that this attention on “the basics” is set to continue.

Charlie Arms-Harris speaks with Jonny Turner on Hokonui Muster about recent legislative changes

Charlie Arms-Harris on Hokonui

 

Copeland Ashcroft employment law specialist Charlie Arms-Harris recently spoke with Jonny Turner on the Hokonui Muster about the recent legislative changes in employment agreements.

LISTEN HERE 

Bullying, Harassment & Stress

The Copeland Ashcroft Law Team recently presented a seminar roadshow on the crossover between employment law and health and safety obligations, and one of the areas of focus in this presentation was the management of work related bullying, harassment, and stress.  This article summarises some of the “need to know” basic tips from the roadshow.

Drug and Alcohol Testing in the Workplace

The Copeland Ashcroft Law Team recently presented a seminar roadshow on the crossover between employment law and health and safety obligations, and one of the areas of focus in this presentation was the management of drug and alcohol testing in the workplace.  This article summarises some of the “need to know” basic tips from the roadshow.

Fixed Price Offer! Health and safety gap analysis and employment agreement review

Recent changes to employment and health and safety law mean that all employers need to update their health and safety plans and employment agreements.  We’re offering fixed price reviews of your health and safety plans and employment agreements – contact us for your fixed price and to discuss how we can help you make sure you’re covered in terms of the changes.

Employment law changes:
On 1 April 2016, amendments were made to several key pieces of employment law.  The impact of the new law included: