Employment, equal opportunities and diversity: Divided by faith
A recent case involving Islington Borough Council highlights the difficulties faced by an employer seeking to balance the competing legal protections afforded to its employees. Here we consider the inherent conflict created by the rights of employees under the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003 and identify some trends emerging from the early cases under the regulations. However, in an area where the public often voices strong opinions, the legal protection afforded by the regulations may not be the end of the story. Since 2003, UK employees have been protected from discrimination on grounds of both (i) their religion or belief (or lack thereof) and (ii) their sexual orientation. Problems can arise in the workplace when religious convictions impel employees to behave in a way which may offend colleagues (for example, by making comments that are perceived as being homophobic or sexist). Complicated balancing acts must be performed by employers where protections clash in this way.
This premium content is reserved for
Legal Week Subscribers.
A PREMIUM SUBSCRIPTION PROVIDES:
- Trusted insight, news and analysis from the UK and across the globe
- Connections to senior business lawyers within the leading law firms and legal departments
- Optimized access on all of your devices: desktop, tablet and mobile
- Complete access to the site's full archive of more than 56,000 articles
Already have an account? Sign In Now