Discrimination is prohibited under the Equality Act 2010 and by the University’s Dignity and Respect Policy
Unlawful discrimination can take a number of forms: 
  • Direct discrimination: where someone with a protected characteristic is treated less favourably than others. For example, this may be where only a certain gender are interviewed for a position as they are presumed to be the only individuals who could undertake it successfully. 
  • Indirect discrimination: where particular conditions are applied to everyone but unfairly disadvantage someone with a protected characteristic. For example, requiring all jewelry to be removed including where they are expressly religious symbols which do not impact on health and safety. 
  • Harassment linked to a protected characteristic. 
  • Victimisation: where someone is treated unfairly because they’ve complained about discrimination or harassment. For example, victimisation may include denying a promotion because of someone has reported the responsible manager for misconduct previously. 
The Equality Act 2010 permits ‘positive action’ to be used when specifically taking action to help people with protected characteristics and may be used in circumstances where individuals are at a disadvantage, have particular needs or are under-represented in an activity or type of work.

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) provides further information on the different types of discrimination and what is meant by ‘a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim’.

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