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The Lawdown Episode 20: Premiership footballer’s cat kicking misconduct, diversity and the future of barrister wigs, and harassment in the metaverse

We are delighted to share Episode 20 of The Lawdown, our regular podcast discussing the latest key employment, discrimination and partnership law-related news stories, and the interesting legal issues behind them!

In this episode of The Lawdown, Partners Beth Hale and Emma Bartlett, Senior Associate Wonu Sanda and Associate Winnifred Sarfo-Gyamfi discuss the law behind some fascinating recent news stories, including:

1. A West Ham footballer who has been reprimanded for an alarming video of him kicking his cat, and the interesting employment law-related issues, including whether an employer can impose discipline for misconduct that occurs outside the workplace; when an employer can suspend an employee, and the legal and practical considerations and constraints that apply; and the impact of serious allegations on the accused’s mental health.

2. A call from a senior QC to abolish archaic requirements for barristers to wear wigs in the few courts where the tradition remains. We discuss the cultural insensitivity concerns and implications of court wigs for diversity and access to the legal profession, as well as the potential discrimination issues that may arise when applying blanket workplace dress codes generally.

3. Concerning reports of harassment of avatars in the metaverse (a new developing virtual reality platform) and the questions that arise as to how employers would monitor and address these issues in a potential future metaverse workplace. We discuss new proposed digital solutions, such as a personal avatar boundary feature introduced by Meta and other companies; employer obligations in the metaverse and whether current anti-harassment legislation applies; and the potential complication of applicable law and jurisdiction in an online virtual world.

All 20 episodes are available on various podcast platforms – please click the links below to listen and subscribe:

Apple Podcasts

We hope you enjoy our latest episode! Please get in touch by emailing us at info@cm-murray.com if you would like any information on the topics discussed or if you would like to suggest a story for us to cover in a future episode.

Follow The Lawdown on Twitter: @lawdownpodcast.

CM Murray is Ranked Tier 1 for Employment (Senior Executives) by Legal 500 UK 2022. Brilliant employment law team…Incredibly talented knowledgeable and commercial in their very professional approach. Very able in international employment matters.’ (Legal 500 UK)