Good morning. I am an Agency Worker and have worked in my current assignment for over8 months. The organisation allows its permanent staff to work from home and no checks are made on whether or not they actually do work those days. I have asked to work from home twice in the 8 months in my current assignment. Both times I have not only been required to itemise the work I will be completing at home but also to provide evidence of that work on my return. I feel I am being treated differently because of my Agency Worker status. Is this discrimination please? Thank you Ruth XXXXXX
Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. How does this affect you, does it affect your pay or benefits or is it just an inconvenicne?
Hello Ben, it affects my pay as my 'employer' will not authorise my timesheets unless I provide evidence that I have worked that is not provided by permanent staff
This is not an issue of discrimination because that can only occur if there is unfavourable treatment due to a protected characteristic, such as age, gender, race, religion, etc. Being an agency worker is not a protected characteristic.
Your rights will be determined by the Agency Workers Regulations (AWR), which provide protection for agency workers.
The AWR give certain rights, split into two - day one rights and rights from week 12.
Day one rights apply from the start of your employment and allows you the same treatment as permanent employees when it comes to access to collective facilities and to vacancies. These are not relevant here.
Week 12 rights apply once you have 12 weeks in the same role with the hirer. After that time an agency worker is entitled to the same "basic working and employment conditions" to which they would have been entitled had they been directly recruited by the hirer. The relevant terms and conditions are terms and conditions relating to:
Whilst you say your pay is affected this is an ancillary effect and not something that would be directly covered by the definition of pay that would be covered.
It is quite unlikely that the arrangement you are complaining of will be included in the protection you get under the AWR as it does not fall within the relevant terms and conditions which are protected. As such it is neither discrimination, as it is not for a protected characteristic, neither is it in breach of the AWR.
I'm sorry if this is not necessarily the answer you wanted to hear but I hope you understand I have a duty to be honest and explain the law as it actually stands and sometimes this does unfortunately mean delivering bad news. Please let me know if you need me to clarify anything.