Managing Employees during the Olympics, Jubilee and Euro 2012

May 2012
Over the next few months, we have the Diamond Jubilee, the UEFA Euro 2012 football tournament and the London 2012 Olympics, each of which will present their own challenge to employers. Simply-docs has produced a series of guidance notes and other documents to guide employers through potential pitfalls. In order to accommodate these new documents we have created a new sub-folder called ‘Special Events and Public Holidays’.

Firstly, there is a special bank holiday in June to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. The 2012 late May bank holiday has been moved to Monday 4 June 2012 and an additional Jubilee Bank Holiday will be on Tuesday 5 June 2012.

It is a common misconception that the Diamond Jubilee bank holiday means time off work and holiday pay for everyone employed in the UK. However, as 5 June 2012 has been set as an extra bank holiday, it is ultimately up to the employer to determine whether special bank holidays will be treated in the same way as the usual bank and public holidays (e.g. Christmas Day and May Day bank holiday). The employer will determine this by reference to the contract of employment. The Simply-docs Guidance Notes to the Diamond Jubilee explore what employers need to consider when establishing whether or not the employee has the right to treat the Diamond Jubilee as a normal bank holiday.

Next, there is the UEFA Euro 2012 football tournament, followed by the London 2012 Olympics; great news for sports fans but potentially difficult for employers.

With both events, there are likely to be times when employees are going to want to follow events at work and this could cause disruption for employers. All employers need to consider their approach to employees following events at work, and review any policies on sporting events, to ensure that employees know what is expected of them, and that any measures are fair to all employees.

Additionally, there may be more holiday requests and unplanned absence than normal. Employers need to remind employees of their policies and deal with any issues which may arise in a fair and proportionate way.

Simply-docs have guidance notes and associated documents to help employers deal with both events.

Essentially, the key messages for employers are:

• Be aware of employees’ contractual position or company policy and make sure this is clearly communicated to employees and line managers
• Be clear and consistent in handling employee requests and any issues which may arise.

The contents of this Newsletter are for reference purposes only and do not constitute legal advice. Independent legal advice should be sought in relation to any specific legal matter.

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