Feeds

ToryDems nearly swallow Labour blueprint of equality for all

Employers aghast at discrimination by association

Build a business case: developing custom apps

The former Labour government's Equality Act 2010 mainly came into force today, prompting howls of pain from employers' groups.

It's hard to imagine the ToryDems like the whole of the act, but they've decided to lump most of it. Indeed they shelved the original timetable for the act, keeping back key parts they disagree with. Civil servants have put the best possible spin on it, saying it tidies up a raft of disparate legislation, and will "deliver a simple, modern and accessible framework of discrimination law which protects individuals from unfair treatment and promotes a fair and more equal society".

The British Chamber of Commerce probably speaks for large parts of the business community when it raises "concerns about the amount of employment red tape to be implemented between 2010 and 2014" arguing that the government should be rolling back red tape to allow more jobs to be created. It claims the act will impose a one-off cost of £189.2m on business, with further legislation liked to cost firms £11.3bn between now and 2014.

New provisions include "associated" discrimination, so for example, people associated with or perceived to be associated with a protected characteristic, eg carers for a disabled relative, can claim protection under the act.

The "definition of gender reassignment" is changed, by removing the medical provision requirement.

Breastfeeding mothers get protection. Employers can be held responsible for third party harassment, eg of frontline staff by customers, and this is extended to all "protected characteristics".

"Secrecy clauses" are banned, to ensure discriminatory payscales cannot be hidden.

Employment tribunals will be able to make recommendations that affect the whole workforce of an organisation, not just the complainant.

The act also extends "protection in private clubs to sex, religion or belief, pregnancy and maternity, and gender reassignment," and allows "claims for direct gender pay discrimination where there is no actual comparator".

The government is still "considering" a range of other provisions, including "dual discrimination", diversity reporting by political parties, and positive action in recruitment and promotion.

David Frost, Director General of the British Chambers of Commerce said: “If private sector businesses are to offset job losses in the public sector, the significant costs of employing people must be reduced. As austerity measures start to bite, companies need the flexibility and freedom to boost employment and drive our economic recovery." ®

Build a business case: developing custom apps

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Fast And Furious 6 cammer thrown in slammer for nearly three years
Man jailed for dodgy cinema recording of Hollywood movie
Caught red-handed: UK cops, PCSOs, specials behaving badly… on social media
No Mr Fuzz, don't ask a crime victim to be your pal on Facebook
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Ballmer leaves Microsoft board to spend more time with his b-balls
From Clippy to Clippers: Hi, I see you're running an NBA team now ...
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Call of Duty daddy considers launching own movie studio
Activision Blizzard might like quality control of a CoD film
Primetime precrime? Minority Report TV series 'being developed'
I have to know. I have to find out what happened to my life
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Scale data protection with your virtual environment
To scale at the rate of virtualization growth, data protection solutions need to adopt new capabilities and simplify current features.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?