Obiter was coralled with a job lot of employment lawyers in the posh Caledonian Club near Hyde Park Corner last week. They were there to debate progress that the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (BIS) has made with its reforms of employment law.
It’s fair to say that critics outnumbered supporters. One ventured: ‘If you want to destroy the tribunal service, do what BIS has done: give it to the Ministry of Justice, charge fees and keep it away from anyone who knows anything about the business world.’Another said: ‘We are witnessing the greatest attack on an individual’s right to make a claim that Britain has ever seen.’
Yet another described the reforms as an example of ‘modern politics setting agendas by creating anxieties’.
Against all this, a BIS spokeswoman was valiantly upbeat. ‘We are tackling the complexity of employment law and the perception that tribunals are expensive and biased against employers,’ she said. Well, that’s all right, then.