Coalition for Racial Equality & Rights

Public Sector Equality Duty

Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act was introduced in October 2010 to replace and simplify over 100 pieces of previous anti-discrimination Acts and regulations.

The Act replaced previous anti-discrimination laws with a single act to make the law simpler and to remove inconsistencies. This makes the law easier for people to understand and comply with. The Act also strengthened protection in some situations.

The Act covers nine protected characteristics, which cannot be used as a reason to treat people unfairly. Every person has one or more of the protected characteristics, so the Act protects everyone against unfair treatment. The protected characteristics are:

  • Age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion or belief
  • sex
  • sexual orientation

The Equality Act sets out the different ways in which it is unlawful to treat someone, such as direct and indirect discrimination, harassment, victimisation and failing to make a reasonable adjustment for a disabled person.

The Act prohibits unfair treatment in the workplace, when providing goods, facilities and services, when exercising public functions, in the disposal and management of premises, in education and by associations (such as private clubs).

For more information about the Equality Act 2010 please click here