It is in this context that I welcome the recent legal judgment in the case of Yunus Bakhsh, nurse and former UNISON activist, who was unfairly dismissed by his employer in a blatant act of victimisation of a trade union activist (http://jonrogers1963.blogspot.com/2011/04/victory-of-yunus-bakhsh-is-victory-for.html?m=1).
Represented by John Hendy, Yunus has won the right to a full hearing of his application for judicial review of the wilful refusal by his public sector employer to implement a tribunal order for his reinstatement (http://www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Admin/2012/1445.html).
Since the right of employers to ignore such orders is one of the worst things taught to everyone preparing for their first tribunal hearing, this decision is of great interest and vital importance.
The legal point at issue is that, since employees of public sector bodies (and some others carrying out public functions) can rely directly upon their Convention rights (as set out in the Human Rights Act) then it is arguable that a refusal to comply with a reinstatement order, where this is made further to a decision that a dismissal was an act of trade union victimisation (breaching the employee's human right to freedom of association) may be unlawful where the employer is a public body.
The relevance of this decision to the activists of the UK's main public service trade union is self-evident, and I hope that the handful of embittered individuals who pursued a vendetta against Yunus within UNISON won't prevent our Union from keeping our activists informed about a legal case of such compelling interest.
It may be that an Emergency Motion has been submitted to UNISON National Delegate Conference to draw attention to this case. Were I given to gambling I wouldn't offer attractive odds against someone thinking that the text of such a motion shouldn't even be published.
But perhaps I too am a sad and embittered old cynic...
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