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Discrimination at Work: Advice for Businesses

If you are an employee looking for advice about discrimination at work, please click here

Accusations of discrimination in the workplace can be extremely damaging for any business, causing severe unrest, reduced morale and costly implications if the matter is taken to court. 

It is essential that business owners understand the laws relating to discrimination at work. The employment law specialists at Clough & Willis can offer advice and support relating to this issue, ensuring you are equipped with the knowledge you require regarding discrimination to safeguard you and your employees. 

We are experts in our field and can offer sound advice about discrimination, and provide help when a business is facing accusations of discriminatory behaviour. Contact us today by calling 0800 083 0815 or fill out an online enquiry form and we will get back to you at a convenient time for you. 

What are the different types of discrimination at work?

Workplace discrimination can come in many forms, including on the grounds of age, gender, race, sexual orientation, disability and religious belief. All forms of discrimination can have serious implications for a business and it is essential that employees feel protected against this during their working life. 

Discrimination of any type usually falls into one of four categories: 

  • Direct discrimination: This is where an employer treats a member of staff less favourably than their colleagues due to their age, gender, race, sexual orientation, a disability or their religious belief.
  • Indirect discrimination: When a practice, rule or policy that applies to everyone in the same way has worse effects on some people than others.
  • Victimisation: When an employer treats a member of staff in a negative manner because they have made previous complaints about the workplace.
  • Harassment: A display of belittling or threatening behaviour directed at an individual or a group of workers. 

No matter what form it takes, discrimination is extremely serious and cause significant distress for those affected. Legal advice can help business owners to ensure they are adhering to the law.

How to avoid discrimination in the workplace

Employers must have the correct procedures in place to handle any discriminatory incidents properly. Having such procedures in place will help to avoid the risk of legal action against your business. 

Clough & Willis has a great deal of experience in helping businesses to implement such procedures. 

Common questions we ask where discrimination may be an issue include: 

  • Can you justify why you did not employ a particular job applicant? You can be liable before entering any contractual relationship.
  • Is an employee's poor performance caused by a disability?
  • Are there any adjustments you could make to enable an employee on long-term sick to return to work?
  • Can you justify refusing an employee's request to work flexibly on her return from maternity?
  • Does your bonus scheme discriminate against disabled staff or those on maternity leave?
  • Does a proposed change in hours cause any problems for females with childcare responsibilities or staff with particular disabilities?
  • Can I sack someone who has a disability?

Get in Touch

If you are a business owner looking for advice on how to implement anti-discrimination procedures, or are facing allegations of discriminatory behaviour, our legal experts - based at our offices in Bolton and Bury - can assist. Contact us today by calling 0800 083 0815 or fill out an online enquiry form and we will get back to you at a convenient time for you.

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