Sex discrimination

The Equality Act 2010 bans employers from committing direct and indirect discrimination, harassment and victimisation against individuals because of their sex. However, employers can justify indirect sex discrimination to achieve a legitimate aim through proportionate means.

Prior to the implementation of the Equality Act 2010 on 1 October 2010, discrimination on the grounds of pregnancy and maternity, gender reassignment and marriage and civil partnership was set out in the now repealed Sex Discrimination Act 1975. However, pregnancy and maternity, gender reassignment and marriage and civil partnership all exist as protected characteristics in their own right under the Equality Act 2010.


Bias behind failure to select women for FTSE boards revealed

Flawed selection procedures and entrenched bias are combining to minimise the numbers of women on FTSE company boards...

Senior female executive who refused to socialise with male team loses sex discrimination claim

1 Jul 2020

Fellow workers claimed she was “dictatorial” and lacked respect for colleagues.

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Financial whistleblower wins £75k payout in sex discrimination case

25 Jun 2020

Female compliance worker been subjected to sex discrimination after raising concerns about potential financial malpractice.

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US Supreme Court hands down landmark ruling for LGBT workers’ rights

16 Jun 2020

The US Supreme Court has ruled that it is unlawful for employers to dismiss workers because of their sexual orientation...

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Uber drivers in court over ministers’ failure to help gig workers

11 Jun 2020

The High Court today hears a case brought by drivers and the IWGB over Treasury's failure to protect precarious workers during the Covid-19 crisis.

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Firms face legal ‘minefield’ when staff return to work

12 May 2020

Employers face a ‘minefield’ of legal risks when they bring staff back into the workplace, especially if they ask workers...

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Former TalkTalk exec loses equal pay claim

20 Apr 2020

A former TalkTalk manager who claimed she was paid 40% less than male colleagues has lost an equal pay case...

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Samira Ahmed and BBC reach equal-pay settlement

24 Feb 2020

Journalist Samira Ahmed has reached an undisclosed financial settlement with the BBC after she won an equal pay case against...

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Shared parental pay case refused Supreme Court appeal

18 Feb 2020

A highly anticipated case to test whether it is discriminatory for employers to enhance maternity pay while not doing the...

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Workers speaking up over sexual misconduct at law firms

20 Jan 2020

Sexual misconduct complaints and cases rise sharply as #MeToo wields influence.

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The 10 most important employment law cases in 2019

11 Dec 2019

We round up the most significant cases of the year including legal judgments on CCTV, restrictive covenants, enhancing shared parental leave, collective bargaining and more...

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Female police officer wins sexism appeal over London allowance

3 Dec 2019

A female police officer’s claim for sex discrimination has been upheld after she did not receive a ‘London allowance’ during her maternity leave.

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Department store criticised for period badges

29 Nov 2019

A department store in Japan has said it is reviewing a policy where its staff could wear badges indicating whether...

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Embassy secretary awarded £400,000 for ‘spiteful’ sex discrimination

22 Nov 2019

Employment tribunal awards £400,000 to former Qatari Embassy secretary who was subjected to a campaign of sexual harassment and discrimination.

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Government considering making employee references mandatory

29 Oct 2019

The government has said it will consult on the idea that employers should be required to provide, as a minimum,...

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