Employment Law News
Revised ACAS Code changes provisions on worker’s right to be accompanied
A revised version of the ACAS Code of Practice on Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures took effect on 11 March 2015, after having been approved by Parliament.
The new Code clarifies the provisions regarding requests by workers to be accompanied during a disciplinary or grievance meeting, confirming that the requirement of reasonableness applies to the request itself, and not to the choice of the companion. Thus, in order to be considered reasonable, the worker must consider the practicalities of the request. This would include allowing the employer reasonable time to make arrangements, and providing the information necessary to deal with the request.
The Code further states that an employer must agree to the request to be accompanied by one of the chosen statutory companions, and confirms that workers are entitled to change their chosen companion more than once.
Employers should ensure that their disciplinary and grievance procedures are amended to reflect these new changes to the Code of Practice.
ACAS Code of Practice 1 – Disciplinary and Grievance Procedures