Music teacher wins increased holiday pay for hundreds of thousands of workers

Hundreds of thousands of school workers will benefit.

A music teacher has won a court victory which increases the amount of holiday pay hundreds of thousands of part-time and casual workers are entitled to.

After her employer, the Harpur Trust, paid her just 12% of her normal wages over her holiday, Lesley Brazel took them to court.

After a four year legal battle, the Court of Appeal has ruled that Brazel is entitled to 28 days annual leave – and this should be paid at the rate of a week’s pay.

The position of leave for hourly-paid workers in the education sector, who are not paid a salary during school holidays, has been unclear due to the absence of government guidance or definitive case law on their holiday rights.

Trade union Unison intervened in this case, as they felt the outcome affected their members. Their general secretary Dave Prentis said:

“Staff in schools are often required under contract to be at school outside term time, and, like Mrs Brazel, are required to do additional unpaid duties beyond those periods. It’s right that they should be paid the same minimum statutory entitlement of 28 days annual leave like everyone else.”

Unison legal officer Shantha David added: “The government’s failure to provide guidance in this area has left workers in limbo. The courts have once again had to step in to stop the abuse of workers and to fix what legislation should have made clear from the outset.”

The decision follows similar Unison court victories such as the overturning of legal fees at employment tribunals and the decision that regular overtime should be included when calculating holiday pay.

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2 Responses to “Music teacher wins increased holiday pay for hundreds of thousands of workers”

  1. Tom Sacold

    Well done Unison.

  2. Patrick Newman

    Demonstrates the importance and value of employees having an effective trade union. Unfortunately, only a minority of workers seem to understand this. Remarkably I saw an excellent advert by Unite for the benefits of union membership at Jersey Airport!!

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