Race discrimination

Race is a protected characteristic under the Equality Act 2010, which bans direct and indirect race discrimination, victimisation and harassment. However, employers can justify indirect race discrimination to achieve a legitimate aim through proportionate means.

Under the Equality Act 2010, “race” means colour, nationality or ethnic or national origins. Although caste is not specifically covered in the Equality Act's definition of race, case law shows that it is possible for an employee to bring a claim for race discrimination on the basis of caste (Chandok and another v Tirkey).


Theresa May at a school in Streatham, south London, ahead of the publication the Government's race disparity auditGeoff Pugh/Daily Telegraph/PA Wire/PA Images

Ethnicity facts and figures must be “explained or changed”

Theresa May will challenge society to “explain or change” disparities in how people from different ethnic backgrounds are treated, as...

David Lammy MP led the 18-month reviewKen McKay/ITV/REX/Shutterstock

Lammy review: Criminal records could be ‘sealed’ from employers

8 Sep 2017

Individuals’ criminal records could be sealed from employers as part of a series of recommendations made in an independent review...

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Gender pay gaps and parental leave

Pay gaps need to tackle ethnicity and disability as well as gender, urges EHRC

15 Aug 2017

All jobs should be advertised as available for flexible working and fathers should receive ‘use it or lose it’ parental...

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Queen’s speech 2017: Brexit dominates legislative programme

21 Jun 2017

The Queen has outlined the minority Government’s legislative programme for the next two years, concentrating on eight separate Brexit-related bills....

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Ethnicity pay gap reporting: how would it work?

26 May 2017

Both the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats have pledged to introduce ethnicity pay gap reporting if they come to power...

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Social media misconduct: dismissal harsh but fair

17 May 2017

An employment tribunal has held that the dismissal of a long-serving employee over derogatory comments she made on Facebook about...

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How to deal with uncertainty around employing EU nationals

19 Apr 2017

Organisations employing EU nationals in the UK must tread carefully on the path to Brexit or face discrimination claims or...

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Consultation opens on caste discrimination

29 Mar 2017

The Government Equalities Office has published a public consultation on caste discrimination, following a 2013 legislative option to add “caste”...

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BBC reporter’s employment case struck out

8 Mar 2017

An employment tribunal has struck out a BBC reporter’s claim after finding that she discussed her case with a newspaper...

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“The time for talk on race in the workplace is over, it’s time to act” – Baroness McGregor-SmithREX/Shutterstock

Employers urged to report race pay gap data

28 Feb 2017

Businesses with more than 50 employees should publish a breakdown of their workforce by race and pay band, an independent...

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The BBFC rates the 1978 classic Halloween as an 18 for its atmosphere of "strong threat" and graphic depictions of killingsMoviestore Collection/REX/Shutterstock.

Tribunal Watch: Teacher’s dismissal for showing 18-rated film to pupils

9 Jan 2017

Tribunal Watch returns with a round-up of recent case law reported in the news. The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) upheld...

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There is much for the employment law aficionado to be excited about in 2017. Dirk v. Mallinckrodt / imageBROKER/REX/Shutterstock.

Employment law cases 2017: seven decisions to look out for

14 Dec 2016

We round up seven significant employment law decisions expected in 2017, with cases pending on employment status, equal pay, whistleblowing,...

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Michelle Obama “ape” comment: how employers can deal with racist language

2 Dec 2016

An inflammatory and racist Facebook post that referred to Michelle Obama as an “ape” caused widespread outrage on social media....

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The 10 most important employment law cases in 2016

30 Nov 2016

What were the most significant employment case law decisions in 2016? Stephen Simpson counts down the 10 most important judgments...

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Racial harassment in the workplace: five key cases

23 Sep 2016

Ex-England and Spurs footballer Paul Gascoigne has pleaded guilty to racially-aggravated abuse over a “joke” he made to a black...

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