HR urged to contribute to debate on equality legislation

The
Employers Forum on Age is urging HR professionals to take an active part in the
shaping of future workplace anti-discrimination legislation.

Last
month the Government released its consultation paper, Towards equality and diversity:
implementing the employment and race directives, that aims to ban
discrimination in the workplace.

Ideas
in the paper include across-the-diversity-board definitions of direct and
indirect discrimination and the creation of an equality commission.

Sam
Mercer, director of campaigns at EFoA, wants HR professionals to contribute to
the debate.

She
said, “The Government is asking employers what exemptions that they want. HR
must look now at its employment policies to see what could cause problems.

“We
are still working to age assumptions and stereotypes that are no longer
appropriate. The Government does not know what might cause employers problems
so it is up to HR to tell them.”

Mercer
is concerned that the workability of future legislation may be in question, as
he believes the Government has not promoted the consultation paper widely
enough.

“If
the Government is going to take a gently gently approach then it will not
create the level of debate needed to ultimately create equality in the
workplace in this country.

“We
are urging all HR people to give their input and ideas to the consultation so
we can produce legislation that is practical for employers otherwise they could
have a huge shook in store.”  

The
consultation period ends on 29 March 2002.

Contact
Personnel Today and the EFoA on 020 8765 7597 with your views.

www.dti.gov.uk/er/equaility

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