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Expert guide

Sexual orientation discrimination

Today’s UK society is very diverse, and it is important to ensure that no group or groups are discriminated against, just because they are perceived as ‘different’. Discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation was made unlawful under the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations 2003 (‘the 2003 Regulations’), in employment or vocational training. As of 1st October 2010, all existing equality legislation (including the 2003 Regulations) was consolidated into the Equality Act 2010 (‘The Act’). ‘The Act’ also covers direct discrimination and harassment because of perceived sexual orientation. So for example, treating an employee less favourably because they are thought to be gay, whether or not they actually are, would also be covered. Further, being directly discriminated against or harassed because of someone else’s sexuality is also covered under ‘The Act’.

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