Labour & European Law Review
22 March 2017
The Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) has decided in Achbita v G4S Secure Solutions that it is not directly discriminatory to ban an employee from wearing an Islamic headscarf at work.
Although attendance at a religious festival can be a genuine manifestation of belief, the Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) held in Gareddu v London Underground Ltd, that it did not automatically follow that attendance for a five-week period was also a genuine manifestation. As such a refusal to allow an employee to take five weeks’ holiday was not necessarily indirect religious discrimination.
In order to bring certain tribunal claims, claimants have to show they are employees as opposed to workers or self-employed contractors. In Pimlico Plumbers Ltd and anor v Smith, the Court of Appeal held that a plumber who was ostensibly self-employed was, in fact, a worker because of the degree of control that the company exercised over him and the tribunal could therefore hear some of his claims.