An HRM Sample coursework on Redundancy and the Disability Discrimination Disability, Redundancy and the Disability Discrimination
This case is set within an organisation that is rationalising the size of the workforce with
compulsory redundancies. Management has chosen selection criteria using indicators
such as attendance and performance, but as there is no formal appraisal system they rely
on records and anecdotal evidence about performance.
Mr Frank is identified under these criteria. In spite of records of excellent service
between 1995 and 1998, during the relevant review period (the past two years) his
attendance and performance have shown a marked decline. At the time of his selection
for redundancy, Mr Frank had been on sick leave for two months under a diagnosis of
debility (lethargy and tiredness). There is evidence that his condition fluctuates, but that
during his worst bouts he is unable to leave the house.
On his file there was a note from the occupational health unit reaffirming this diagnosis
following Mr Frank’s first visit some six weeks ago. This diagnosis also accords with
assessments made regularly over the past 24 months. A further note from occupation
indicated that Mr Frank’s condition was undergoing further investigation through his GP,
although to date they were unsuccessful in coming up with anything any more specific
than a ‘debility’ label.
As stated, Mr Frank was away from the workplace during the redundancy selection
process. The first he heard of it was when he received a letter saying that he was under
notice for redundancy. The letter also stated that due to his comparatively short length of
service he was not eligible to join the redeployment register. As part of the redundancy
selection process, individuals were allowed to appeal.
As the personnel manager, you have received a letter for Mr Frank’s solicitor suggesting
that Mr Frank’s condition falls within the scope of the Disability Discrimination Act
1995 (DDA) and therefore alleging that his selection for redundancy constitutes
discrimination under the terms of the DDA. The solicitor has indicated that she expects a
prompt reply and that, if a satisfactory response is not received within seven days, she
will recommend that the matter be presented to an employment tribunal.
The chief executive has asked you, in consultation with a specialist, to recommend a
course of action, either justifying the organisation’s position or setting out an
alternative course of action.
The organisation is rationalising the size of its workforce with required and
compulsory redundancies on the basis of attendance and selection criteria. The employee
named as Mr. Frank is identified under this criteria. The facts showed that Mr Frank in
the beginning of his service period (1995 to 1998), he has shown a tremendous
performance and attendance. But from the last 2 years not only the attendance but also
the performance of Mr. Frank declined. Therefore on the basis of redundancy criteria Mr
Frank has been notified of his selection for redundancy. He has been also notifies that
due to short length of service he is not eligible to join the redeployment register.
The organization has received a letter from Mr Frank’s solicitor that says that Mr Frank’s case should be considered on different basis because of his health and if it is not
considered then the case falls within the scope of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995
(DDA) and therefore alleging that his selection for redundancy constitutes discrimination
under the terms of the DDA.
Case Study and Analysis:
Let me clear the following by following points:
Redundancy policy of the organization: Organization is aware and fell regretted for
this redundancy but it has been realized that the policy is quite compulsory for the
organization and becomes the requirement of the business. The policy is carefully
examined by the top management and HR panel of the organization and is applied
very fairly to all the employees of the organization. Mr. Frank case is no exception.
The performance indicator against Mr. Frank showed that he has been unable to
show good performance in his job, the organization released that he been off sick,
but there is not much and rigid records to the organization that justifies that Mr.
Frank is falling under Disability Discrimination Act 1995 (DDA) . If we look at
what is meant by the disability, The Act defines a “disabled person” as a person
with: “a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long term
adverse effect on his ability to carry out normal day-to-day activities”. Records
show that Mr Frank’s health condition always fluctuates. The past records of Mr.
Frank showed that he has been given treatment for his temporary health problems
and there is no serious health problem associated with Mr. Frank. It has been come
through the overall diagnosis that he has got debility which is a symptom of
tiredness and lethargy and it does not show any serious disability.
So it does not completely put Mr. Frank’s case under DDA.
1. Disability Discrimination Act:
Even if we consider Mr. Frank’s case under DDA.
According the DDA section 19 the employer discriminates against the disabled
employee if the employer treates his disabled employee less favourably than other
employees and he can not justify that traetment. Also he cannot jsutify the disabled
employee failure to comply with that duty. The Act ensures in terms of employments that a disability of the person will not stop a
person from employment or contuing employment unless the disability will really
obstruct the person from doing a particular job and the employer couldn’t overcome this.
As the act is for the disabled persons and it makes sure that a disabled person is treated
Although MR. Frank is fairly treated, he has been always given the sick payment from
the last 2 years and relevant support, but now due to redundancy his performance is also
considered with attendance. So the organization can not see that Mr. Frank is
discriminated on the basis of DDA act.
The employment meets the requirements of the employments legislation. Therefore he
has been given a fair and equitable treatment.
Disability Discrimination Act:
According to the discrimination act, the company is believed to discriminate against a disabled person in the following cases:
• If for any reason which connects to the person’s disability, and that the company
doesn’t treat him properly.
• If a person is not able to show the reason for the treatment in process.
• The treatment is justified only if in the eyes of the company the conditions
mentioned below are justified and are satisfied.
1. In whatever circumstances, the treatment is required to ensure the health of
2. Whatever circumstances, the disabled person is not able to come into an
agreement, or can give consent, in this case the treatment is justifiable.
3. If in a case falling under 19(1)(a) of DDA, the treatment is required so that the
company cannot do it for other members of public.
4. If in a case falling under section 19(1)(d), if there are differences in terms of
the services provided by the company which is greater than the cost which
was previously expected.
Duty of the company to their employees:
• If in a case that the a company has a policy that prohibits or makes difficult an
employee or a member of a public to get access to the services the company
provides, then it’s the responsibility of the employee to take necessary action
against the company to get those services.
• In case there is a physical feature such as the design of the premises that hinders
employee from getting benefits of the services, then it’s the responsibility of the
company to take steps such as to remove that feature, or modify it so that it has no
longer has that effect, provide methods so that to avoid that feature.
• If an aid of the service such as hearing aid is required or language interpreters
then the company makes sure these services are provided.
Now, by considering the above DDA, and considering the current scenario with Mr
Frank, the company has not made any breech with its commitments to provide its
services to disabled persons. It has done all it can do to make sure that disable persons like Mr. Frank get what is required. For e.g. Mr. Frank and his GP has not come with any satisfactory outcome that what is it exactly that ails Mr. Frank. And he has not been able to show company what ails him other that a debility. On the other hand the company has made it sure that his health gets top priority. Mr. Frank has not been able to come into an justifiable agreement with the company but still company took care of his needs. Even in the prolonged periods of his illness, which cost company desirably because on the other hand, if a company employs another person instead of Mr. Frank, it can get profit, but company did not and still has not fired him straightaway, and it waited for him to get healthy and get back to work, not caring about the losses it has to face in that regard. And if looking at the duties the company, it has made sure that the employee gets the sick claims that he has made and to get easy access to the services it provides to its workforce.
And the company has done what it could to be in contact with its employee, and to be in
touch with him to discuss the latest developments and to be sure he gets what he deserves in order to get rid of his ailment.
From the discussion, we can hereby say that the claim made by the Mr. Frank and their
solicitor that the procedure followed by the company to include him in the redundancy list is not fair. The company observes that even after paying him his due money and his statutory pay and sick pay, it has performed its duty. There is no way denying that the company helped him in anyway possible to make sure he stays fit and gets the required treatment he deserves and no one clause of DDA has been breeched by the company. But even after this the company is willing to give him more compensation regarding his redundancy from the company. It’s because the company takes its employees in high regard. If even this solution cannot be reached, the company may also consider him to be redeployed in the work force given a specified period of time in which Mr. Frank recovers from his health, but that is to say requires long debate with the management. But it can be done given Mr. Frank’s relationship with this esteemed company.