Podcast: Brexit and political opinions at work
How should employers approach political discussions at work? Can employers prevent employees from displaying pro- or anti-Brexit paraphernalia at work? What about staff campaigning or protesting outside working hours? Will employers making redundancies because of Brexit really choose leave voters as the first to go? We are joined by principal employment law editor Stephen Simpson to discuss five scenarios related to Brexit and political opinions at work.
The five scenarios we discuss are:
- Expressing Brexit views at work An employer is faced with incidents of employees getting into arguments over Brexit. A small number of customers also complain about staff making inappropriate comments to them about Brexit.
- Political campaigning at work An employee comes to work wearing a badge that says "Down with Brexit" and puts up anti-Brexit posters at their desk. The employee has also been seen printing out hundreds of anti-Brexit flyers on work printers.
- Political protests outside work An employee attends a pro-Brexit rally at the weekend and is filmed shouting obscenities at an MP. The video is posted on social media. On the same weekend, another employee appears on the BBC news while attending a peaceful anti-Brexit rally.
- Brexit-related harassment An Eastern European worker complains to an employer that they overheard a colleague making offensive remarks about Eastern European workers during a discussion about the impact of Brexit on immigration levels.
- Redundancies because of Brexit The owner of a business that is struggling warns staff that, if Brexit results in redundancies, "leave" voters will be the first to go.