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News Report Page 10 of 26
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Southport employers urged to ensure their business survives the office party

SOUTHPORT employers are being reminded of their legal responsibilities when it comes to protecting their staff at Christmas parties. Lindsey Knowles, employment law solicitor at Kirwans law firm, which has offices across Southport, Liverpool and Wirral, is urging employers to set out strict recommendations in relation to the office party, in an attempt to avoid altercations occurring that could lead to potential claims against the business. The warning comes as companies across the Region prepare for this year's festive celebrations, with employees and their bosses alike looking forward to the chance to let their hair down.

However, Lindsey warns that not all businesses realise the legal responsibility they have to ensure that their employees are protected at such events. She said:- "In the run up to Christmas, most people look forward to enjoying a drink with colleagues and celebrating the festive season. Often though, alcohol and work can prove an unhealthy mix, and a booze fuelled party can easily lead to personal injury, sexual harassment or discrimination by members of their staff for which the employer can be held responsible; or vicariously liable. In fact, the Court of Appeal heard such a case last week, and subsequently ruled that a recruitment agency was vicariously liable for the actions of its managing director after he punched 1 of his employees, causing him brain damage, at a Christmas party."

According to Lindsey, however, there is a defence for companies that can prove they took all possible steps to prevent the act from occurring. "Businesses can't possibly prepare for every eventuality, but there are actions they can take to protect both their employees and their business so that the festive celebrations act as a conduit to bring the team together; rather than cause ructions that tear it apart."

Countdown Now On To BTR Liverpool Santa Dash 2018
Photographs by Paul Francis Cooper.

DASHING Santas, in Liverpool City Center, will pull on their running shoes in 6 weeks to take part in the UK's biggest festive 5K fun run. The date for the 15th BTR Liverpool Santa Dash has been confirmed as Sunday, 2 December 2018, starting at 9.30am, from Pier Head Liverpool. The festive spectacular is highly regarded as Liverpool's kick start to Christmas; and up to 10,000 red, blue and mini Santas will take part. 1st staged in 2004, the BTR Liverpool Santa Dash was created by BTR Liverpool Race Director Alan Rothwell. The event has since continued to grow in popularity. 3 years later, the festive fun run was expanded to include the 1K Mini Dash for under 12s, followed by the introduction of blue Santa suits in 2010 by public demand.

More than 1,500 excited Santas have already registered to take part in this year's event. Places for Blue Santa suits are limited. Santas will gather on the start line at Pier Head Liverpool, part of the City's iconic UNESCO World Heritage Site. The route will then take Santas through the City Centre , before crossing the finish line outside Liverpool Town Hall on Dale Street where they will be greeted by festive characters and 'real' snow. This will be followed by the 1K Mini Dash for under 12s. It starts in Castle Street, at approximately 11am, after all participants in the main Santa Dash have completed the course.

The mini Santas will also enjoy the same festive finish line at Liverpool Town Hall. The Churchill Flyover is closed for essential works, which means it will not be part of the route for 2018. BTR Liverpool have been left no choice but to amend the route, and details will be announced shortly.

BTR Liverpool is the leading independent organisation for creating, managing and delivering headline race events across Liverpool City Region. Its event portfolio includes the Liverpool ½ Marathon, Mersey Tunnel 10K; Wirral ½ Marathon and 10K; Port Sunlight 10K and 5K; 52-mile Tour Of Merseyside.

BTR Liverpool Race Director Alan Rothwell commented:- "The 15th annual BTR Liverpool Santa Dash is just around the corner and we're really excited about this year's event. We have some exciting announcements to make in the coming weeks. We're in the final stages of confirming the revised route, and a formal announcement is imminent. The Santa Dash is accessible and open to everyone. Wheelchair participants, prams and dogs are very welcome. Even unicyclists regularly take part, which causes quite a stir along the route. The sea of red and blue Santas gathering at Pier Head Liverpool and making their way through the City really is a breathtaking sight. It's a real highlight in our BTR event portfolio, and we invite people to join us to make this year's event the biggest yet."

Each year, the fun run attracts:- joggers, runners, individuals, group, families, charity runners, and corporate organisations. Entry includes:- a Santa suit and commemorative finishers' medal. The entry fee covers all costs to organise and deliver the event. Santa suits will be available to collect from Thursday, 1 November 2018, from St Johns Shopping Centre, and you can still register to take part in this event online now.

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service Crews Attacked

ON 18 October 2018, a group of around 20 youths in the Huyton attacked crews and the fire engine responding to a 999 call. We are told that the youths had barricaded a road in order to halt progress, with several wheelie bins and a large quantity of debris alight in the road. As the firefighters attempted to extinguish the fire, they came under attack both physically and verbally from the group. This attack included the crews and the fire engine having fireworks, stones and even road signs thrown at them.

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service said that:- "This disgraceful behaviour towards those undertaking their duty will not be tolerated. All fire engines carry CCTV cameras and footage has been passed onto Merseyside Police. Do you know what your children are up to this weekend? An attack on fire crews is an attack on your own community. We would urge parents to have a discussion with their children before they go out about what is acceptable behaviour towards people who protect them day and night, 24/7, 365 days a year. This type of action not only endangers our crews, but the community as a whole. Any damage to a fire engine puts lives at risk and costs huge amounts of cash and time to fix, that we just do not have."

What are your views on this topic? Should the law be made even stricter for those who carry out this type of attack, no matter what age they are? Also, why do you think this type of thing is happening more and more? Please email your thoughts and views to:- News24@SouthportReporter.Com.

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