Race Discrimination is illegal in the UK, and employers are under a duty to ensure that they have no such practices in their organisation, with very few exceptions. It is important to note that protection against race discrimination is wide ranging, and covers not only race but also nationality, ethnic or national origin and extends to all matters in the employment context including promotion and training. The Equality Act 2010 sets out the four kinds of race discrimination that exist, all of which are illegal in UK law;
A situation of direct race discrimination is where an individual is treated less well by their employer, because of their race or what they employer thinks is their race. Furthermore, direct race discrimination also includes situations where an individual is treated less favourably, because of the race of someone that he or she associates with or has a good working relationship with.
Indirect race discrimination covers situations where there is some kind of working practice or policy in an organisation that is supposed to apply to everyone, but has a particularly negative impact on employees of a particular race.
An individual may be suffering from Harassment where they are the subject of some kind of unwelcome behaviour in the work environment that is related to their race. This conduct will have a damaging impact on the working environment of the individual or has a detrimental impact on the individual.
Racial Victimisation is where an individual is treated less well, because they have made a complaint about race discrimination in the past or have supported others who have made a similar complaint against their employer.
Employers must ensure that they have procedures in place to address complaints of racial discrimination. An employer may be able to defend a claim of race discrimination, if a particular role required someone to be of a specific race to perform the role effectively. However, such a defence must be analysed very carefully. If you believe that you have been the subject of less favourable treatment because of your race, or because of the race of people that you associate with at work, you may have been the subject of race discrimination.
The team at DigbyLaw are experts in the fields of employment law, and are regularly involved in working with individuals who believe they have been racially discrimination against. We can help you to try and resolve the situation with your employer on an informal basis, or if needs be, assist you in bringing the matter before an Employment Tribunal to deal with the matter.
If you are facing race discrimination issues at work as an employee then contact our solicitors at Employment Law Edinburgh for some initial advice. We will advise you of what we can do to help your situation.
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