We live in a multicultural, diverse country but unfortunately discrimination and biases still exist. Our employment law solicitors in Brighton and Hove will advise you if you have a discrimination matter, regardless of whether you are an employee or employer.
What Is Discrimination?
Discrimination in the workplace is the unfair treatment of someone based upon one or more characteristics. The laws of England and Wale set out 9 protected characteristics set in the Equality Act 2010, which include:
- Religion or belief
- Disability – including those diagnosed with cancer or HIV
- Sexual orientation
- Marriage or civil partnership
- Pregnancy and maternity
- Gender reassignment
This means if you feel you’re being treated differently at work or have had no choice but to resign, and have reason to believe it’s due to one of these 9 characteristics, you may have a case for discrimination. There does not have to be intent to discriminate in discrimination claims. Demonstrating discrimination took place to your detriment is sufficient.
Employers have a duty to ensure they take steps to prevent discrimination and to make reasonable adjustments for employees if necessary. If they do not, our employment law solicitors can help employees bring a claim against them.
What Types of Discrimination Are There?
The Equality Act 2010 outlines 4 types of discrimination, which are:
This is when you are treated less favourably because of a protected characteristic that you or someone you know has. It can also arise if your employer perceives that you have a protected characteristic and discriminates against you, even if you don’t.
Normally unintended, indirect discrimination occurs when a situation fulfils 4 criteria:
- The action affects a group of people, not all of whom will have a protected characteristic
- The action would put those who do have a protected characteristic at a disadvantage compared to those who do not
- That you are disadvantaged by the action
- The employer can’t justify the action objectively
You must be able to prove that you have been disadvantaged by whatever action your employer has put in place to successfully claim on grounds of indirect discrimination.
Harassment is a grounds for discrimination that both those with a protected characteristic and those without can claim. It happens when someone’s dignity is violated through bullying, gossip or any other detrimental behaviour regardless of whether it was intended to cause offence.
Anyone can claim for victimisation if you can prove you have suffered a detriment such as being denied a promotion or pay rise due to your actions including:
- Raising a grievance
- Complain about discrimination
- Support a colleague’s discrimination or disciplinary case
- Give evidence in a colleague’s discrimination or disciplinary case
If you are unsure of what type of discrimination case you are facing, contact our employment law solicitors today for an initial consultation.
What Is Positive Discrimination?
Positive discrimination refers to employing someone, or treating them more favourably than others simply because they have one of the 9 protected characteristics set out by the Equality Act 2010. For example, if a company sets out to employ someone purely because they have a protected characteristic, this would be illegal. However, it can also be extremely difficult to prove this. Our employment law solicitors will advise whether it would be sensible for you to bring a case based on positive discrimination.
Why Use a Solicitor for Discrimination?
Discrimination cases evoke powerful emotional responses as you are not treated fairly due to the very fibre of your being. Our employment law solicitors understand the feelings involved and offer objective advice to obtain the best outcome for your situation.
How Much Does a Discrimination Case Cost?
Every employment case is different and this very much depends the complexity of your matter and how long your case goes on for. Our employment law solicitors will always give you a range of estimates at your initial consultation for a variety of outcomes.