Direct and indirect racial discrimination are two distinct forms of discrimination that can occur, although there are crucial differences. Direct And Indirect Racial Discrimination Examples.
When it comes to direct discrimination, it’s important to know that not all unfair treatment is considered unlawful under the Equality Act 2010.
It’s only unlawful discrimination IF you’re treated differently (or unfairly) because of a protected characteristic, such as race.
However, when it comes to the actual treatment, the intent isn’t a consideration under the law. In fact, it doesn’t matter at all if the person who has treated you differently didn’t intend to discriminate against you or if they didn’t realise that they were discriminating at all.
If you’re treated differently because of a protected characteristic, it’s classed as direct discrimination – no matter the intent.
Whereas Indirect discrimination is where a practice, rule or policy in place has a worse effect on some people than others.
What Is Direct Racial Discrimination?
Direct discrimination occurs when you’re treated worse than someone else for specific reasons.
Under the Equality Act 2010, it’s referred to as being treated ‘less favourably’ because of protected characteristics such as race.
Once you raise a formal grievance because of racial discrimination, there’s a procedure that all employers should follow. Acas sets out a code of practice relating to discrimination, although most employers should have their own grievance procedure in place.
There must be an investigation to ensure that all information is brought forward, and employers can bring a relevant person to a grievance meeting – that might be a legal presentative, union representative, or someone from the Citizen’s Advice Bureau.
It’s worth noting that any grievances should be raised as soon as possible, particularly when it relates to racial discrimination as this is a particularly sensitive and serious issue.
What Is Indirect Racial Discrimination?
Indirect discrimination is where a policy, rule or practice has a worse effect on you than others because of your race.
A practice, policy or rule can be a one-off decision, a plan for the future, an arrangement, conditions, qualifications, and a whole range of things.
The key when it comes to indirect racial discrimination is that it applies to everyone in the same way, so in essence, it appears to be ‘neutral’.
Because if the rule only applies to some people who have the same protected characteristic (race in this case) then it would be classed as direct discrimination.
Indirect discrimination is a slightly more nuanced area of the law, which means that it might not always be obvious that the rule discriminates against you.
Examples Of Direct Racial Discrimination
An example of direct racial discrimination might be if you’re an Asian person who is working as an account manager when a new client joins…
But you’re then moved to a non-client-facing role because the client doesn’t wish to work with an Asian account manager. This is unfair or less favourable treatment purely based on your race, which is direct discrimination.
In fact, even if your employer compensated you with other opportunities, a bonus, or a pay increase, it would still be classed as discrimination because they’re evidently aware that it’s an issue and they are attempting to make up for it.
Direct discrimination can occur against any of the protected characteristics, including race, and it might happen during the hiring process, it might be denying someone a promotion, or it could simply be not affording someone the same opportunities.
Examples Of Indirect Racial Discrimination
Lots of different rules could be classed as indirect discrimination. One example is if there is an expectation that all staff work on a Saturday.
As Saturday is the sabbath for the Jewish faith, this puts anyone who is Jewish at a disadvantage.
Essentially, if a workplace rule or policy affects a particular race or group differently despite appearing to be a neutral policy, this is indirect racial discrimination.
Direct And Indirect Discrimination Solicitors Near Me
At Solicitors Near Me, we know how difficult direct and indirect discrimination can be to deal with.
It can be a particularly complex area of law which may need expert advice to understand the strength of your case… which is where we can help.
We connect you with expert employment discrimination solicitors near you for FREE so that you can get the help and advice you need with your grievance procedure – whether you’re in the process, considering it, or unsure what your best option is.
You’re under no obligation to press ahead with the solicitor we connect you with and until you decide to proceed, everything is completely FREE.