Updated to reflect the Government's indication that it has "no plans" to introduce emergency volunteering leave because there is sufficient current supply of staff and volunteers in the healthcare system.
Updated to take into account the new duty on public-sector employers to publish trade union facility time, effective from 1 April 2017.
Updated to highlight the impact of the General Data Protection Regulation in force from 25 May 2018, on this document.
In Edwards and another v Encirc Ltd  IRLR 528 EAT, the EAT held that the time employee representatives spent attending trade union and health and safety meetings constituted "working time" under the Working Time Regulations 1998.
The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) has held that the employment tribunal adopted an unduly restrictive approach when deciding that the time spent by two trade union representatives attending union meetings during the day was not "working time". The EAT said that the correct approach is to take into account the aims of the EU Directive relating to working time.
Two trade union representatives working night shifts claimed that the time they spent attending union meetings during the day was "working time" and so they were entitled to an 11-hour rest period from the end of the meetings until the start of their next night shift. The employment tribunal rejected this claim.
David Malamatenios is partner, Linda Quinn, Colin Makin and Krishna Santra are senior associates, and Dominic Speedie is an associate at Colman Coyle Solicitors. They round up the latest rulings.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to time off for trade union duties/activities.