Tuesday, May 31, 2012

Greater Manchester Pay and Employment
Rights Advice Service

The enactment of the Employment Act 2002 (Dispute Resolution) Regulations 2004 gives workers more rights and sets out the procedures which should be followed in the workplace in order for grievances to be pursued. However, nationally the number of employment tribunal applications has not decreased since 2004. This represents an increase of 34% from 2004/05 when 86,181 applications were registered. These statistics raise serious concerns about the effectiveness of this legislation. We were interested in determining whether the Employment Act 2002 (Dispute Resolution) Regulations 2004 was successful in facilitating the resolution of grievances in the workplace. We gathered data via questionnaire from workers who had contacted GMPERAS’ advice line regarding grievance issues between October 2004 and March 2006.

We have run a regular free and confidential advice line on employment rights since 1985. This provides daily contact with the least protected and most vulnerable workers. These are workers who are most in need of basic rights and who have had most to gain from the Employment Act 2002 (Dispute Resolution) Regulations 2004. The central concern of this research was to assess the experiences of this particular group of workers of the statutory grievance procedure, as well as considering whether they had been able to pursue and reach a resolution to their grievances. Between October 2004 and March 2006 486 workers called the advice line with a grievance query and left contact details. These callers were contacted in May 2006 and asked to complete a short questionnaire about their experience of pursuing a grievance against their employer.

Our data indicate that there is often little or no information provided to employees regarding their rights under the Dispute Resolution legislation. Indeed, only 15% of those workers who did make a formal grievance said that their employer informed them of a grievance procedure. This is despite employers being bound by law since the Employment Act 2002 (Dispute Resolution) Regulations 2004 came into force, to provide details of the grievance procedures to the employee in a written statement within two months of their start date with their employer. This clear lack of awareness of or perhaps indifference to, their statutory obligations by employers seems consistent with 46% of respondents believing their employers had not complied with the legislation.

59% of workers who did not make a formal grievance against their employer said that they experienced harassment or had difficulties in following the procedures for making a grievance. Our data indicate that there is insufficient support and mediation available to workers for them to enforce their rights. As might be expected, nearly three-quarters of workers said that they experienced negative feelings such as shock, anger or annoyance. 30% of workers said that the experience of making a grievance affected their health detrimentally. In the cases which were about bullying or discrimination 46% and 57% respectively said that their health was affected detrimentally.

Evidence from our advice line paints a complex picture. It is simply not the case that disputes at work are being resolved efficiently in the workplace. Rather, it seems that employers are often unwilling to comply with the Employment Act 2002 (Dispute Resolution) Regulations 2004. Our research reveals that there is a widespread lack of awareness of the responsibilities of employers towards their employees, and that many employees are not informed of even the minimum requirements of the statutory grievance procedure by their employer. Also, many employees are hindered from pursuing a grievance due to the resulting difficulties at work. In some cases workers are harassed in the workplace when they are attempting to enforce their rights at work. The workers who responded to this survey expressed the need for more help with enforcing their rights. Many workers suggested this could be provided both through trade unions and also through the establishment of an independent body to which they could turn with employment problems. The existence of such a body would not only be of benefit to workers but also to employers who want to understand and provide basic standards at work. In addition it would reduce the increasing burden on tribunals. To ensure that workers can fully enjoy their new rights requires the introduction of new enforcement mechanisms.

In the meantime our advice line will continue to operate until further notice. We are finalising our eventual closure date which will be marked by an event and the final edition of our publication, Bottomline. We will keep you informed about developments and please contact me if you wish to discuss anything.

Can I Practice Sport if I have Toenail Fungus?

Helpful advice for maintaining an active lifestyle when facing a fungal infection

Fungal infections, particularly of the feet, are common amongst athletes and those who lead an active lifestyle. This is because the bacteria and fungi that cause such infections absolutely thrive in the dirty, moist environments that are found in athletes’ shoes, socks, towels, clothing, and bags. What’s more, bacteria just love the pools of warm water found around swimming pools, in communal showers, and on the floor of changing rooms. Such environments, shared by equally active people, are breeding grounds for contagious infections.

office woman

So chances are if you lead an active lifestyle and have toenail fungus, you got it from a similar environment. And the question is, now you have it, is it possible to continue to practice your favourite sport? And the answer is yes; provided you take extra precautions to protect the infection from spreading. Here are a few tips:

  • Clean your feet regularly, and dry them thoroughly with a specific towel. After drying, apply a topical cream like ZetaClear to the affected area and the surrounding areas. The active ingredients in ZetaClear, such as undecylenic acid fight the infection and prevent it from spreading.
  • Wear flip-flops in any communal places with wet floors, particularly changing rooms and showers. You’ll avoid additional infections and will prevent yours from spreading to other people. You can find out more about preventative measures in public places here.
  • Upgrade your hygienic habits, developing different ones than those that may have caused your infection in the first place. Be sure to have more than one pair of shoes that you play sports in, as well as an adequate number of pairs of socks, and several towels. Never wear damp socks and cycle your towels every few days at least.

Tourism in Manchester

Famous for its Premiere League’s top two soccer clubs, Manchester has become one of the most sought destinations in Britain. Whether you look for some legendary live concerts, you are interested in its historic heritage, or you dig some shopping sessions at vintage boutiques, there are a lot of things you can explore and enjoy here. Bring your camera and make sure you will capture the best moments you spend on your family holiday.

With so many tourism employment opportunities in this regional area, you can expect great hospitality. If you seek an experienced travel consultant to help you plan your trip, there is no doubt that you will find one in the friendly city. Start you journey in Castlefield and choose between the old canals, the route along the restored Victorian buildings, or the path through the Roman Fort. You can stop at the art gallery or at Bridgewater Hall for amazing concerts.

There is nothing more interesting than a history lesson at the Museum of Science and Industry, which is located on the oldest railroad station in the world. Let the twelve galleries slip you back in time with vintage cars collection and old machines used in the textile industry. You will find more excitement in the various historic aircrafts and steam-engines. Charm your eyes with full-scale plane replicas and learn about the city’s past.

Discover the beautiful landscapes, architectural masterpieces and rich culture of Manchester with help from qualified guides. They are very well trained and provide an extensively knowledge that will show you another side of this cosmopolitan place. From the gothic Manchester Cathedral to the iconic Town Hall, opt for guided walks and tours for the best experience. Take pleasure in breathtaking panoramic views, stunning building interiors and paintings, and a large exhibition center which is home to various musical performances.

It would be a shame not to visit one of the oldest public libraries in the country. Chetham's Hospital and Library is a wonderful attraction for its numerous books that were printed over a century and a half ago. Ladies will definitely want a tour to Georgian house Platt Hall, where they can see English fashion and costume collections from 1600 to nowadays. Get the most of the town’s cultural life with visits to the Lowry Gallery or Manchester Art Gallery.

If you want an insight into the England’s history of working humans, take a local journey to the People’s History Museum and find out about the industrial society and politics. Do not miss on the colorful Chinatown district. Employees from all the shops or restaurants strive to offer you good quality services and a wide array of Chinese gourmet food and lovely handcrafts. Also, you must visit the big Heaton Park for its impressive edifices, sport facilities, lake, observatory and more.

From pubs to travel agencies and hotels, the tourism sector has impressive staff people that are dedicated and are very well instructed to deal with customers. Regardless if you take a walk to the Old Trafford Stadium for an overview of the Manchester United’s football achievements, see a stand-up performance at The Lowry, or enjoy the nightlife, Manchester is a must-see for its fun activities, events, professional service, scenery, and locations.


0161 123 3762


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