Having the wrong genes could damage job prospects

Loopholes
in the law could allow genetic discrimination in the workplace, according to a
new report.

The
research by GeneWatch UK, the TUC and the British Council of Disabled People
(BCODP) warns that changes to the law are needed to prevent employers from
refusing people jobs on the basis of genetic test results.

The
Genetic Testing in the Workplace report says people with adverse genetic test
results, but no symptoms, are not protected by the existing Disabilities
Discrimination Act.

Employers
increasingly favour genetic tests and are launching research projects which
seek to identify people who are ‘genetically susceptible’ to workplace hazards,
the report claims.

However,
the report also highlights the fact that genetic testing is unreliable and many
false test results are likely.

TUC
general secretary Brendan Barber said: "We want the Government to make
sure everyone has an equal right to succeed at work, whatever their genetic
inheritance. We should be promoting opportunities for all, not penalising
people because of their genes."

By Michael Millar

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