Discrimination at work: Episode 49

Equality Act

Is an instruction to only speak English at work discrimination?

A recent discrimination case has been decided by the Employment Appeal Tribunal concerning an instruction to a Russian employee not to speak Russian at work, an interesting case for various reasons.

In this episode I will cover:

  • What the relevant legal provisions are regarding direct discrimination and harassment
  • What is required to bring a claim for direct discrimination
  • What is required for behaviour to constitute harassment
  • Reasons you should proceed with caution with regards to employees who have been employed for less than 2 years
  • Steps you can take to prevent a claim

 Action Points

Ensure that your managers and supervisors have some training and/or knowledge of the requirements of the Equality Act and that they understand that instructions they give to employees can lead to an employment tribunal claim.

Helpful Links

Kelly v Covance Laboratories Limited

UK Business Startup Podcast

 HR Harbour


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The information contained in this Podcast and post is provided for guidance and is a snapshot of the law at the time. It is provided for your information only and should not be used as a substitute for obtaining legal advice that it specific to your particular circumstances.

The guidance should not be relied upon in any decision making process. It is strongly recommended that you seek advice before taking action.

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