London’s mayor Boris Johnson has added his voice to the criticism of employment tribunals, suggesting existing arrangements are damaging business confidence and therefore limiting growth.

Writing in an article on his personal website, the Conservative politician claimed the system costs UK firms around £1 billion each year, with the number of cases brought against companies rising by 236,000 in 2010.

“The trouble is that it is now becoming standard practice to follow any dismissal or redundancy with a discrimination claim,” he commented. “Many genuine grievances and genuine cases of discrimination risk being lumped in with a load of codswallop.”

Mr Johnson added that some smaller businesses are being driven to the verge of bankruptcy by spurious claims and suggested that failure to act could “entrench inequality” by limiting the creation of new jobs.

Last month, the government unveiled its Employers’ Charter in an effort to adjust the balance of the tribunal process, which was welcomed by the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development.

Posted by Hayley Edwards