Melton Borough Council

Protected Characteristics

Race and the law

The Equality Act 2010 provides rights for a person or a group of persons not to be discriminated against or treated less favourably, harassed or victimised on the grounds of their race, colour, nationality and ethnic or national origins.  Romany Gypsies and Irish Travellers are legally recognised as ethnic groups, and protected from discrimination by the Race Relations Act (1976, amended 2000) and the Human Rights Act (1998).

Protection for race covers:

  • direct discrimination
  • indirect discrimination
  • harassment
  • victimisation

In very limited circumstances, there are some jobs which can require that the employee is of a particular racial group. This is known as an 'occupational requirement'. One example is where the employee provides personal welfare services to a limited number of people and those services can most effectively be provided by a person of a particular racial group because of cultural needs and sensitivities.

Race useful contacts and links:

Amnesty UK works independently and impartially to promote respect for all the human rights set out in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC). The EHRC champions equality and human rights for all, working to eliminate discrimination, reduce inequality, protect human rights and to build good relations, ensuring that everyone has a fair chance to participate in society.

Equality UK is a UK national support organisation that is empowering Roma to resolve employment, housing, education, healthcare and social welfare issues.

Race Equality Foundation works to develop interventions that overcome barriers and promote race equality in health, housing and social care.

The Race Equality Centre is a voluntary organisation which promotes and seeks to implement a racially just, fair and equitable society which will enhance the quality of life for all citizens of Leicester and Leicestershire.