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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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JONES Should a grievance procedure even after Appeal

Resolved Question:

FOR BEN JONES
Should a grievance procedure even after Appeal not provide an outcome which is suitable to me i.e. discrimination, harassment and bullying are not resolved what can I do next. I have less than 2 years employment with this company
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. What was the grievance specifically about?
Also please note you have an open question from my previous advice here:
http://www.justanswer.co.uk/law/95mm5-good-evening-due-number-work-issues-including.html
I would be grateful if you could please leave your rating for that response and we can then continue with your new query on here. Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I work for a Chinese business who set up a UK Office. The UK office was English speaking and communicated in English with HQ in China
Over the last 6 months English speaking staff have been replaced with bilingual staff. These staff including department staff members are corresponding with HQ (in Chinese ) but also locally in our UK office. More and more Chinese speaking employers are been employed I am been isolated and told from the MD To learn Chinese!
There is no requirement in my terms of employment to speak or communicate in written Chinese
As far as I'm concerned this is discrimination and harassment excluding me from daily business matters on the basis of language
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
If you have raise a grievance and after the outcome and subsequent appeal you are still not satisfied that the situation has been resolved, your options would depend on what you are complaining about. In this case you would potentially be claiming indirect race discrimination because you are being treated less favourably when compared to a Chinese-speaking individual. However, language in itself is not a form of discrimination and cannot in itself be used to claim discrimination. You need to find another relevant factor, such as nationality or ethnic origin. If for example everyone else who speaks Chinese in the company is Chinese and you, as the only non-Chinese employee are being treated detrimentally it could work. However, if there are other workers, for example English nationals who happen to speak Chinese, it would be more difficult. Also an employer has the opportunity to justify such treatment as a necessary occupational requirement. For example does your job require you to speak Chinese to be undertaken properly or can you actually get along fine without it. An example given by the EHRC is a superstore which insists that all its workers have excellent spoken English. This might be a justifiable requirement for those in customer-facing roles. However, for workers based in the stock room, the requirement could be indirectly discriminatory in relation to race as it is less likely to be objectively justified. In any event, if you were to take this further your only option now is to make a claim in the employment tribunal for indirect discrimination as your internal options have been exhausted and that would be the next step. I trust this has answered your query. I would be grateful if you could please take a second to leave a positive rating (selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts at the top of the page). If for any reason you are unhappy with my response or if you need me to clarify anything before you go - please get back to me on here and I will assist further as best as I can. Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Noting your answer the only Chinese speaking people are of Chinese origin. The team we have employed of some 30 consultants are all English speakers and do not understand Chinese.
HQ are communicating in Chinese to our UK Office in Chinese and viva versa I do not receive translations. It is impossible for me to understand fully what is happening. Our MD has called meetings for the UK team but only invited Chinese speakers
I hope this clarifies the situation.
If my grievance options are exhausted do I need to register the matter with ACAS? While we are going through this process it seems very difficult to remain in employment with them not least because I am been excluded.
I do not want to resign as this suggests the decision to leave is mine and the reason for leaving is more of been pushed out due to discrimination and harassment. With this in mind how do I leave?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
If your grievance fails then you have two options - one is to resign and claim discrimination but the other is the same without resigning. Discrimination does not require you to resign although if you feel you have to then you can. Whatever option you follow you would need to use ACAS and their free conciliation service to try and agree on a settlement instead of claiming. If no agreement is reached then you will be allowed to make a claim. But I understand it would be difficult to remain in employment during that time so if nut feel have to leave then you may do so at any time and state you believe you have been constructively dismissed.
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 46224
Experience: Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
Ben Jones and other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Hello, I see you have read my response to your query. Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? If your query has been dealt with please take a second to leave a positive rating by selecting 3, 4 or 5 starts from the top of the page. If you need further help please get back to me on here and I will assist as best as I can. Thank you.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
In terms of the next move you refer to tribunal,. How would you go about this next step and with me currently employed with the company it may make the work situation very difficult for me. Will I have to leave the company first?
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 1 year ago.
Sorry for some reason my last response did not register fully. I basically said that to make a claim for discrimination you do not have to leave the company. You can make the claim whilst employed there. The employer should not treat you detrimentally for bringing in a claim for discrimination, otherwise it would amount to victimisation. That is the legal position but in practice there could be subtle ways of bullying at play – it is impossible to predict how they would take this. So there would always be a risk involved with making a claim whilst employed and you will need to weigh up the pros and cons and decide what is more important to you – pursuing the claim and getting justice in relation to that or safeguarding your job.

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