This morning there is much discussion of the Equality Act 2010, which is implemented in the UK today. It includes new provisions to protect individuals who have caring responsibilities from being discriminated against (a phenomena being referred to as ‘associative discrimination’); prohibitions on asking employees about their health (unless relevant to the specifics of the job); and ‘third party harassment’, which includes further provisions for dealing with hostile environment harassment (e.g. overheard discriminatory banter). It also includes positive duties for employers to take positive action in recruitment and promotion in relation to members of under-represented groups.
Fawcett have objected to the partial implementation of the act – the requirement that employers make public pay differences is not yet enacted (apparently it will be later).
And of course there is much discussion in the media about whether the act has ‘gone too far’, is just a ‘headache for employers’, contains provisions that are ‘barking mad’. Ug. You can hear discussion of the act on the BBC Radio 4 here .
You can read the full provisions of the act here (I’m yet to scour the details yet!).