New rights afforded to workers and employees

Employees will now have the right not to be dismissed or treated detrimentally because they have to undertake jury service.

This is one of the outcomes of the further implementation, this week, of provisions contained within the Employment Relations (Northern Ireland) Order 2004.

The legislation commences provisions which deal with a number of rights for workers and employees and also extends certain protections to those wishing to avail of flexible working patterns.

In addition, the new legislation brings into operation provisions:
  • designed to speed up the trade union recognition or derecognition process;
  • which give the Labour Relations Agency the power to require information from parties where it asked to settle a recognition dispute;
  • enabling the creation of a fund for certain specified purposes relating to trade union modernisation;
  • which deal with the law relating to industrial action, including amendments to the protections for employees taking lawfully-organised, official industrial action;
  • which make amendments to the procedures relating to the exercise of functions by the Certification Officer, including new powers to deal with vexatious cases and litigants.

The legislation came into operation on 24 July 2005.


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