Discrimination Policies – Implementation is as important as Intent

Key Points
  • Discrimination and harassment are currently under a worldwide spotlight and a significant issue with workplaces and service delivery organisations, including education providers
  • Well-structured, clearly-defined anti-discrimination policies with clear reporting chains and an understanding of regulatory requirements are critical for best practice responses
  • Framing these policies not as burdensome, but as reflective of key, positive principles is central to cohesive implementation.

It is clear that awareness and intolerance of discrimination and harassment are currently under a worldwide spotlight. Modern employers are becoming increasingly sensitive to the factors contributing to inappropriate behaviour and are seeking to eliminate these issues from the workplace.

It is critical that organisations are prepared to respond and function in this environment. Underpinning best practice preparation is the development of well-structured and clearly-defined anti-discrimination policies with clear reporting chains and an understanding of regulatory requirements, led from the top of an organisation.

Unfortunately, issues in implementation which might stem from unaligned organisational cultures can undermine even the most robust policies and procedures.

Framing these policies not as burdensome, but as reflective of key, positive principles is central to cohesive implementation. Instead of making employees feel like they must not discriminate lest they suffer legal ramifications, developing a culture of non-discrimination within an organisation is crucial.

Hicksons Partner, Jennifer Parkes, utilises her practical knowledge of discrimination litigation to inform the implementation of policies and procedures across businesses and service organisations.

Post by Jennifer Parkes

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