Most employers have the best of intentions and look to treat all employees and job applicants fairly. However, the breadth of equality legislation can be daunting and mistakes can be made. We take a step by step approach to managing equality and diversity issues. We look to put in place sensible and practical policies, provide effective training programmes for management to the staff , give guidance to avoid claims and reach solutions which work for both employees and employers.
There has been a steadily increase in characteristics of an employee upon which it is no longer acceptable for an employer to base employment related decisions. As the law stands, they are sex; marital or civil partnership status; race; disability; gender reassignment; religion or belief;sexual orientation; pregnancy or maternity leave and age. These grounds are referred to as “protected characteristics”. There are four principal ways in which an employer may discriminate against an employee – by directly discriminating, by indirectly discriminating, by victimising or by harassing them. In addition, there are two forms of discrimination which are specific to disability discrimination – a failure to make reasonable adjustments and discrimination arising from disability.