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The Equality Act 2010 applies to ‘workers’; but what does this term mean?  It means all employees, including trainees and apprentices, as well as job-seekers and so on.

The scope of the Act is very broad and it applies to every context of work life, including:

  • Recruitment and selection
  • Team working
  • Communications
  • Pay and reward
  • Training and development
  • Progression and selection for promotion
  • Discipline and grievance.

So having acknowledged that each of us has to be equality-aware, it is appropriate for all of us to review equality in our workplaces to some extent. Our roles will determine the detail of such a review, but let’s consider how to put together an action list to implement measures for improvement, where these are needed. We have already mentioned ACAS in this course. ACAS is an independent organisation funded by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills. It has a leading role inequality at work as it aims to improve organisations and working life through better employment relations. It helps with employment relations by supplying up-to-date information and free independent advice. It works with employers and employees to solve problems and improve performance.

ACAS makes the recommendation that employers review, monitor and act in relation to equality at work.  This involves taking the organisation’s existing equality policy, reviewing and updating it – or if necessary, writing a new one.

  • Are you aware of your organisation equality policy?
  • An equality policy should incorporate a statement of the employer’s
  • Aim to encourage, value and manage diversity
  • A commitment to providing equality for all

A wish to attain a workforce that is representative of the communities from which it is drawn to secure the widest pool of talent possible.

The policy should also show clear identification of the areas of discrimination the employer will counter. ACAS suggest monitoring of how the organisation’s equal opportunities policy is working in practice. Finally, ACAS recommend taking action, where it is needed, to address inequality or to promote diversity. This requires an action plan which details what will be done, by when and by whom. It’s clear that equality is an evolving area of the UK legal system. This means there’s a real need for us all to keep up to date on events and the developments in the legal arena. We all have an obligation to abide by equality laws and to promote diversity and inclusion in society.