The legal and moral case for diversity and inclusion in the organisation
` Equality, diversity and diversity in workplaces create a comfortable environment where people feel appreciated regardless of their cultural, racial or ethnic origin. Diversity in workplaces also ensures the human dignity is honoured and that no one feels inferior because of their heritage.
The business case for inclusion and diversity in the workplace
A manager should influence change, lead by example, enhance teamwork and unity, always crave for knowledge and should ensure the objectives of an organisation are achieved. The power managers possess in an organisation can be used to inspire diversity in workplaces. Diversity promotes creativity, innovation, sharing of ideas and increases business output.
The key legislation that underpins equality and diversity in the UK, especially in regard to the ‘protected characteristics’ of certain demographic groups
The people of ‘protected characteristics’ are fully protected by the Equality Act 2010 against violation of their rights. The protected characteristics include people of a different colour, ethnic, racial or national origin. The Equality Act prohibits discrimination against job seekers, trainees and employees by ensuring there are entitled to equal opportunities as others(Pathak, et al.).
What impact equality and diversity legislation might have on recruiting and selection activities.
Following recent movements, such the Black Lives Matter and MeToo of 2018, recruitment and selection activities are bound to change due to increased awareness. The increased consciousness of rights calls for a thorough inspection of qualification documents and training of workers regarding diversity (Pathak, et al.)
What is meant by the ‘glass ceiling’, and what sensible steps can be taken to address this particular issue.
Glass ceiling refers to an invisible barrier that limits a particular demographic or minority from advancing to higher positions in an organisation. The first step of breaking the glass includes identifying its existence in leadership positions and then implementing strategies. The strategies that can eliminate the issue include encouraging open conversation, applying positive action and using blind methods in the promotion to senior levels (Mindtools).
The difference between direct and indirect discrimination, including examples of each
Direct discrimination happens when an organisation or employer treats someone unfavourably because of their protected characteristics; an example is failing to hire a black person with adequate qualifications due to skin colour. Indirect discrimination occurs when policies in an organisation inconvenience a particular group of people like failing to offer a day off during religious holidays (Trevelyan).
The clause of ‘exceptional circumstances’ where an organisation may claim an exemption from UK legislation due to ‘occupational requirement’
An organisation may be excluded from the UK legislation in exceptional circumstances when individuals with protected characteristics do not have relevant professional qualifications, or the task requires specific conditions. For instance, when a role requires a particular age limit, a person cannot make claims of rights violation.
The meaning of ‘positive action’ and the legal position of this approach in the UK, and any ambiguous aspects of this approach that may cause confusion or difficulty in practice.
Positive action allows employers to favour underrepresented groups if they possess relevant occupational requirements in some circumstances. For instance, in a tie-breaker situation choosing an individual with protected characteristics may help enhance diversity in an organisation. However, the employer must show evidence of underrepresentation, and the action should aim at improving diversity; otherwise, the provision may be misused (Myers Solicitors Limited).
The basic provisions of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974, along with examples of any UK organisations that go well beyond the legal requirements in order to give those with previous convictions a fresh start in the world of work
The Rehabilitation Offenders Act of 1974 protects people who have spent convictions for less than four years by allowing them to lie when taking insurance or applying for jobs. Organisations should, therefore, not punish people who fail to disclose information of conviction when seeking employment opportunities. An example of a UK organisation that protects criminals includes Business in the Community (BITC).
Examples of practical policies that the organisation can adopt within its Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Strategy.
The policies the organisation can adopt to increase diversity include working with recruitment agencies that cherish diversity, using diverse representation such as images in social media platforms, training human resource persons and employing anonymous recruitment practices (The law Society). The creation of a comfortable environment where people can air their grievances may also help in reducing biases.
The law Society. “Business Case for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Within the Legal Profession.” The Law Society, 10 Sept. 2020, www.lawsociety.org.uk/en/topics/hr-and-people-management/equality-diversity-and-inclusion-a-business-case.
Mindtools. “Breaking the Glass Ceiling: – Overcoming Invisible Barriers to Success.” Management Training and Leadership Training – Online, www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newcdv_71.htm.
Myers Solicitors Limited. “Black Lives Matter: Bringing Change to the Workplace.” Myers Solicitors, 21 Sept. 2020, www.myerssolicitors.co.uk/black-lives-matter-bringing-change-to-the-workplace/.
Pathak, Anish, et al. “Black Lives Matter – How Can Employers Be Better Allies? | Lexology.” Lexology, 29 June 2020, www.lexology.com/library/detail.aspx?g=cfb5e09a-c96e-4908-ac61-5d123faa921c.
Trevelyan, Lucy. “What is the Difference Between Direct and Indirect Discrimination?” InBrief.co.uk, www.inbrief.co.uk/discrimination-law/difference-between-direct-indirect-discrimination/.