Sex Discrimination Act
This is a very basic introduction to the intricacies which are in the Sex Discrimination Act. The information on this page is not a substitution for legal advice. If you wish to discuss this further please contact our legal department
Responsibilities of the employer
In law you as an employer are not allowed to favour one person you employ by discriminating against another person due to their sex. In the same way you are not allowed to put restrictions on a job role that excludes women or makes it so difficult that women could not comply with the requirements.
This Law works the same way for men, discrimination or conditions which mean restrictions limiting the job role are unlawful.
As employer accountability for sex discrimination is your responsibility however, if another employee or worker is found to have discriminated against a fellow employee, then the employer will be “vicariously” liable for them as well.
Acts of sex discrimination whether on company property or at arranged functions such as company gatherings are also the employer’s responsibility.
As an employee
It is important to know about the law on sex discrimination if:
Direct Sex Discrimination is when someone or a group decide to treat another person in an unsatisfactory way due to their gender,
Indirect Sex Discrimination – The Sex Discrimination Act now has two definitions
Positive Sex Discrimination
Exceptions to the Sex Discrimination Act
There are 3 exceptions
Religious establishments may execute discriminatory employment where established doctrines of religion exist.
Genuine Occupational Qualification (GOQ)
This is where the justification for a specific job role is clear cut such as a male or female actor to play a specific part.
This is where a job role is advertised to encourage a certain sex or group of society to apply for the position to increase numbers particularly in an ethnic group. It is as an aid to providing balance not as discrimination.
For Further information on this subject visit Sexual Harassment in the Workplace
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