TALiNT International, brought to you by TALiNT Partners provides invaluable information that enables businesses to make informed, strategic decisions. Our curated insights are your tools for problem-solving, fostering growth, and achieving success within talent acquisition and staffing.

New bill introduced to define and eliminate workplace bullying

Table of Contents

Information

Categories

Author

Bullying claims reached a record high in 2022

Rachael Maskell, the Member of Parliament for York Central, presented a bill to parliament on 11th July aimed at eradicating workplace bullying. The bill proposes that employers establish systems for reporting, investigating, and penalising bullying incidents.

The bill also seeks to promote positive behaviours through a Respect at Work Code, which would outline specific actions classified as bullying. The Human Rights Commission (HRC) would enforce the code. This legislative effort follows the departure of deputy prime minister Dominic Raab in May of this year, who resigned amidst allegations of bullying. An investigation found Raab guilty of persistent aggressive conduct. However, he criticized the fairness of the procedures, sparking debates over the definition of workplace bullying.

Richard Fox, Senior Consultant in the employment team at law firm Kingsley Napley, stated that the legal boundaries surrounding workplace bullying have long been a subject of dispute. He said in a recent interview that the bill addresses a long-standing issue and despite the extensive worker protection legislation developed over the years, there has never been an Act that outrightly prohibits bullying or clarifies its exact nature. He believes this bill would be a significant step forward for both employers and employees.

According to analysis from law firm Fox and Partners, bullying claims reached a record high in 2022, rising from 581 to 835 cases between March 2021 and March 2022, representing a 44% increase.

Tania Goodman, a partner at law firm Collyer Bristow, noted that although bullying is covered by various statutes, they do not offer employees sufficient protection. She added, “While these measures have their merits, they don’t directly confront the issue. Other jurisdictions already have specific legislation addressing workplace bullying, which apparently provides a more straightforward recourse for affected employees. Simplifying the law in this area and making it more accessible to individuals, rather than navigating a complex array of legislation, some of which may not be directly relevant, would be advantageous.”

The bill is scheduled for its second reading on 24 November.

Rachael Maskell, the Member of Parliament for York Central, presented a bill to parliament on 11th July aimed at eradicating workplace bullying. The bill proposes that employers establish systems for reporting, investigating, and penalising bullying incidents.

The bill also seeks to promote positive behaviours through a Respect at Work Code, which would outline specific actions classified as bullying. The Human Rights Commission (HRC) would enforce the code. This legislative effort follows the departure of deputy prime minister Dominic Raab in May of this year, who resigned amidst allegations of bullying. An investigation found Raab guilty of persistent aggressive conduct. However, he criticized the fairness of the procedures, sparking debates over the definition of workplace bullying.

Richard Fox, Senior Consultant in the employment team at law firm Kingsley Napley, stated that the legal boundaries surrounding workplace bullying have long been a subject of dispute. He said in a recent interview that the bill addresses a long-standing issue and despite the extensive worker protection legislation developed over the years, there has never been an Act that outrightly prohibits bullying or clarifies its exact nature. He believes this bill would be a significant step forward for both employers and employees.

According to analysis from law firm Fox and Partners, bullying claims reached a record high in 2022, rising from 581 to 835 cases between March 2021 and March 2022, representing a 44% increase.

Tania Goodman, a partner at law firm Collyer Bristow, noted that although bullying is covered by various statutes, they do not offer employees sufficient protection. She added, “While these measures have their merits, they don’t directly confront the issue. Other jurisdictions already have specific legislation addressing workplace bullying, which apparently provides a more straightforward recourse for affected employees. Simplifying the law in this area and making it more accessible to individuals, rather than navigating a complex array of legislation, some of which may not be directly relevant, would be advantageous.”

The bill is scheduled for its second reading on 24 November.

Share

TIARA Awards MPU