In a special yuletide edition we talk about W Brooks & Son v Skinner  IRLR 379. It’s not exactly a classic – but it is about dismissing someone who got drunk at a Christmas party – and in December we all know that employment law is mainly about Christmas parties.
Actually this is quite a nice case that has something to say about zero tolerance policies – which links in to the very recent case of Arnold Clark Automobiles Ltd v Spoor– so it’s not just gratuitous attempt to link employment law to Christmas.
This episode looks the classic redundancy selection case of Williams v Compair Maxam Ltd. With redundancies increasingly run as though they are recruitment exercises, how relevant is this 1982 EAT decision today? Well, things many not have changed as much as you think.
We cross the Atlantic in this episode for the case that invented the concept of indirect discrimination – Griggs v Duke Power This is the origin story of indirect discrimination – the case that was used as the basis for the definition in the Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and the Race Relations Act 1976. Has it stood the test of time? And how does the approach of the US Supreme Court compare with that of the UK Supreme Court in Essop v Home Office?
Here is a case that you may think you’ve never heard of – but it contains the classic test of fairness when it comes to dismissing someone for poor performance or incompetence. Behind the legal principle, James v Waltham Holy Cross UBC is a strange tale of an employee whose grievance causes offence in high places.
Since this is one of the key cases setting out the Range of Reasonable Responses test it has a place close to my heart: Iceland Frozen Foods Ltd v Jones is so fundamental to the law of unfair dismissal it almost counts as part of its origin story.
Also, find out which prominent trade union lawyer once represented the Earl of Bradford!