Discrimination occurs when one employee is treated less favourably than another by an employer. It could be on the grounds of gender, sexual orientation, race, disability, marriage or civil partnership, pregnancy and maternity leave, gender reassignment, nationality, colour, religion or belief or age.
As an employer you are obliged to take steps to eliminate discrimination in recruitment and in your workplace to ensure you comply with the different aspects of equalities legislation.
Discrimination can fall into various categories.
- Direct discriminationis when one employee is treated less favourably than another on the basis of age, gender, religion or belief, disability or sexual orientation.
- Indirect discriminationis when an employer imposes a particular requirement or practice on all employees that may unnecessarily disadvantage a certain group such as requiring employees be clean shaven may disadvantage certain religious groups.
- Harassmentis defined as offensive or intimidating behaviour which aims to humiliate, degrade, undermine the target and violate their dignity
- Victimisationis when someone is treated less favourably than others because they have made a complaint or allegation concerned with discrimination on the basis of age, gender, religion or belief, disability or sexual orientation.