What will I learn? Describe what has been done by government to reduce gender inequality in society.
Success Criteria I can… Describe what has been done by government to reduce gender inequality in society by taking notes on various pieces of legislation passed by the UK Government.
Government responses to Gender inequalities (wealth) A significant amount of legislation has been introduced in order to address gender inequalities. Equal Pay Act Sex Discrimination Act Equality Act 2010 However, does it go far enough and has it worked?
Equal Pay Act 1970 (and amendments) Made it illegal to pay women less than men for the same/equivalent job. Under the Equal Pay Act 1970 women are entitled not to be discriminated against by having less favourable terms of employment including pay if; * They are doing work that is the same as, or broadly similar to, that of a man in the same employment or employed in the same service, or * If they are covered by a job evaluation scheme that gives them similar scores to a man doing different work, or * If they are doing work which is of equal value to a man’s. Government responses to Gender inequalities (wealth)
Sex Discrimination Act 1975 (and amendments) Made it illegal to discriminate against women in terms of employment and promotion (and other areas including training and harassment). Makes it unlawful to treat a person less favourably than a member of the other sex. The Act is not limited to preventing discrimination during employment, but also includes education, the provision of goods, facilities and services. Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC) 1975 Introduced at the same time as Sex Discrimination to provide support to women in achieving gender equality. In 2006, EOC was incorporated into the Equality and Human Rights Commission. Government responses to Gender inequalities (wealth)
The job of Equality and Human Rights Commission (est. 2006) is to challenge discrimination, promote human rights and to create a fairer Britain. Note - Equality and Human Rights Commission was formed with the merger of the Equal Opportunities Commission (EOC), the Commission for Racial Equality (CRE) and Disability Rights Commission. http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/boxing/25985527 - female boxer reports discrimination to EHRChttp://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/boxing/25985527 The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)
The Gender Equality Duty 2006 The Gender Equality Duty (GED) requires gender to be considered by all public bodies (gov. depts., colleges, universities, schools, NHS Trusts and Boards, councils, police and fire authorities, publicly funded museums etc.) when deciding policy. The promotion of equal opportunities between women and men requires public authorities to recognise that the two groups are not starting from an equal footing and identical treatment will not always be appropriate. EXAMPLE - A significant victory was won for the women's sector in December 2007 when Rape Crisis UK (a pressure group) used the Gender Equality Duty to persuade a local authority to close a local lap- dancing club. If a public body is not complying with the Duty then they can be reported to the EHRC.
The Gender Equality Act 2010 A new Equality Act came into force on 1 October 2010. The Equality Act brings together over 116 separate pieces of legislation into one single Act. Combined, they make up a new Act that provides a legal framework to protect the rights of individuals and advance equality of opportunity for all. The Act simplifies, strengthens and harmonises the current legislation to provide Britain with a new discrimination law which protects individuals from unfair treatment and promotes a fair and more equal society.
The Gender Equality Act 2010 Example – the Act has been used by women’s rights groups such as Maternity Action to challenge discrimination of women who breastfeed in public (http://www.maternityaction.org.uk/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/breastfeedingpublicplace.pdf )http://www.maternityaction.org.uk/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/breastfeedingpublicplace.pdf The Act says that it is sex discrimination to treat a woman unfavourably because she is breastfeeding. It applies to anyone providing services, benefits, facilities and premises to the public, public bodies, further and higher education bodies and association. Service providers include most organisations that deal directly with the public. Service providers must not discriminate, harass or victimise a woman because she is breastfeeding. Discrimination includes refusing to provide a service, providing a lower standard of service or providing a service on different terms. Therefore, a cafe owner cannot ask you to stop breastfeeding or refuse to serve you.
The Gender Equality Act 2010 The nine main pieces of legislation that have merged are: The Equal Pay Act 1970 The Sex Discrimination Act 1975 The Race Relations Act 1976 The Disability Discrimination Act 1995 The Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003 The Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003 The Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006 The Equality Act 2006, Part 2 The Equality Act (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2007
The Gender Equality Act 2010 The main features of the Equality Act Discrimination against those with "protected characteristics" is illegal. There are nine protective characteristics in total and cover, amongst other things, age, gender, race and sexual orientation. (Full list - http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/private-and-public- sector-guidance/guidance-all/protected-characteristics ) http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/private-and-public- sector-guidance/guidance-all/protected-characteristics There are also a variety of ways in which discrimination is defined.
The Gender Equality Act 2010 The main features of the Equality Act It can be: Direct discrimination - where someone is treated less favourably than another person because of a protected characteristic. Associative discrimination - this is direct discrimination against someone because they are associated with another person who possesses a protected characteristic. For example, an employer who treats a job applicant unfavourably because it perceives that person's name to be evidence of their protected characteristic status. Discrimination by perception - this is direct discrimination against someone because others think that they possess a particular protected characteristic.
The Gender Equality Act 2010 The main features of the Equality Act Indirect discrimination - this can occur when you have a rule or policy that applies to everyone but disadvantages a person with a particular protected characteristic Harassment - this is behaviour that is deemed offensive by the recipient. Employees can now complain of the behaviour they find offensive even if it is not directed at them Harassment by a third party - employers are potentially liable for the harassment of their staff or customers by people they don't themselves employ, i.e. a contractor. Victimisation - this occurs when someone is treated badly because they have made or supported a complaint or grievance under this legislation.
The Gender Equality Act 2010 The main features of the Equality Act Employers will be able to take "positive action" to recruit groups who are under-represented in their workforce, where they have a choice between two candidates who are equally suitable. The EHRC publishes guidance on the range of actions employers will be able to take. This is perhaps the most controversial aspect of the Equality Act. Companies which have an imbalance of people will be allowed to positively discriminate. This does not mean quotas, but it will be legal to select someone on the basis of gender or race (assuming they are qualified for the post in every other respect).
Activity Copy and complete a table similar to the one below: PolicyWhat is it?Impact? Equal Pay Act (1970)Law making it illegal to pay women less than men for doing the same job. Significant improvement from pre-1970 but still a 10% gender pay gap in 2014. Sex Discrimination Act (1975) Equality and Human Rights Commission (2006) Gender Equality Duty (2006) Equality Act (2010)
Answers Copy and complete a table similar to the one below: PolicyWhat is it?Impact? Equal Pay Act (1970) Law making it illegal to pay women less than men for doing the same job. Significant improvement from pre- 1970 but still a 10% gender pay gap in 2014. Sex Discrimination Act (1975) Law making it illegal to treat women differently from men in any way (particularly in relation to employment) More women in top managerial positions and politics than ever before, however still a gap as shown by Sex and Power Report 2011 Equality and Human Rights Commission (2006) Body set up to tackle discrimination and promote human rights (ensures laws are enforced) Positive that a body has been set-up to ensure that legislation is adhered to…but gender discrimination and inequalities still exist. Gender Equality Duty (2006) Set of standards which ensure that all public bodies take gender into account when creating policy. Ensures that local authorities promote equality in relation to gender and that people can report breaches to EHRC. Equality Act (2010) Law merging various other laws meaning that discrimination of any kind (e.g. direct or indirect) is illegal (based on gender or any other factor). Sex discrimination cases in 2014 the highest for 4 years (according to GQ Employment Law) – perhaps because of increase in discrimination or because of increase in reporting issues?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business- 11450109 - actual impact of Equality Acthttp://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business- 11450109
I can… Describe what has been done by government to reduce gender inequality in society by taking notes on various pieces of legislation passed by the UK Government.