In October 2010, the Equality Act 2010 came into force. This Act 2010 legally protects people from discrimination in the workplace and in the wider society. It is now referred to as Equality, Diversity and Inclusion or EDI.
It replaced previous anti-discrimination laws with a single Act, making the law easier to understand and strengthening protection in some situations. It sets out the different ways in which it is unlawful to treat someone.
The Act prohibits discrimination against people with the protected characteristics that are specified in section 4 of the Act.
These characteristics cover age, disability, race, gender, sexual orientation, religion or belief, pregnancy and maternity, gender reassignment and marriage and civil partnerships.
The Act requires organisations providing services to the public to:
- Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Act;
- Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not;
- Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not.
LOT’s EDI objectives:
- Ensure our Board, staff, service users and contractors understand their obligations to promote equality and diversity;
- Ensure that our services are accessible and tailored to meet the needs of our service users;
- Ensure our services are non-discriminatory by assessing the impact of all policies, procedures, strategies and core services against all protected characteristics;
- Formulate equality objectives and working practices so that we are seen by everyone who comes into contact with us as a fair, transparent and equitable employer and service provider;
- Develop positive partnerships that support stronger service provision and share common equality and diversity principles.
“As a lawyer I advise a number of businesses regarding employment law including the Equality Act. This organisation is by far the most inclusive and diverse of them all. The management team has great respect for all staff and service users whatever their background, and will not tolerate discrimination or harrassment of any kind”.
Debenhams Ottaway, October 3rd, 2013