The Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission (IHREC) has published an information note following consultation with the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) on the anonymisation of decisions published by the WRC.
The information note relates to decisions made by WRC Adjudication Officers on claims made under the Employment Equality Acts 1998 – 2015 and the Equal Status Acts 2000 – 2015. These acts deal with discrimination in relation to access to and terms and conditions of employment as well as access to goods and services.
The IHREC did recognise that the decision whether to publish the parties names is a matter for the discretion of the Director General of the WRC and/or the adjudication officer to whom the Director General has delegated her functions. However the IHREC has formed the view that the equality legislation does not fall under the categories which require the decisions to be anonymised. Therefore decisions relating to equality claims could and should name the parties. This will certainly lead to more early settlements! Very few employers will want to be associated with a discrimination claim no matter how strong their defence.
More information can be found on the IHREC's website :https://www.ihrec.ie/app/uploads/2017/04/Publication-of-Decisions-by-the-Workplace-Relations-Commission-Under-the-EEA-and-ESA-3.pdf
If you are an employer and you need advice on an equality complaint please contact a member of our Employment Law & Data Protection Team.
Disclaimer:This article is for guidance purposes only. It does not constitute legal or professional advice. No liability is accepted by Leman Solicitors for any action taken or not taken in reliance on the information set out in this publication. Professional or legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this publication. Any and all information is subject to change.
The requirement not to identify parties when publishing decisions does not apply in these cases, but anonymisation can be undertaken at the discretion of the adjudication officer. Cases that are anonymised carry titles such as “Employee vs Employer”, “Student vs School” or “Driver vs Transport company”, and any information that could lead to the identification of the involved parties is removed.