Discrimination laws could hinder progress on diversity

Discrimination
law could be an obstacle to employers who would otherwise embrace the need for
progress in the area of diversity, a new report warns.

The
Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development’s (CIPD) report questions
whether the prospect of litigation creates negative attitudes towards
discrimination issues.

Law
can produce a defensive and negative response from managers, which is more
marked in small firms, it says.

The
report suggests bias will continue despite tight legislation, unless employers
understand the benefits diversity can offer.

It
is only once employers recognise how central diversity is to the way that
business is done that they will engage and drive the change, it says.

Dianah Worman, equal opportunities adviser at the CIPD,
said: "If it is well designed, the law is an important lever for change.
But that on its own is not enough.

“What
is important is a mixed menu of levers and tactics. There is no
one-size-fits-all solution to ensuring progress on diversity, and we must be
open-minded enough to accept this."

By Daniel Thomas

 

 

 

 

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