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Workplace Discrimination, Including Harassment

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In order to have a claim for workplace discrimination compensation, you must show that you have been treated less favourably than others because of a ‘protected characteristic’.


What is workplace discrimination?

If you are being treated unfairly or unfavourably to your colleagues because of who you are, you may have a discrimination claim.

The Equality Act 2010 prohibits employers from discriminating against employees because of the following protected characteristics:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender reassignment
  • Marriage and civil partnerships
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Race
  • Religion or belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation

Workplace Discrimination, Including Harassment


What does workplace discrimination look like?

Discrimination in the workplace is not necessarily obvious. Please see below different forms of discrimination which may present themselves in the workplace:

  1. Direct Discrimination – Treating a person less favourably because of one or more Protected Characteristics.
  2. Indirect Discrimination – There may be a workplace provision, criterion, or practice (PCP) which is not intended to be discriminatory but which has the effect of disadvantaging employees with a particular Protected Characteristic.
  3. Harassment – Harassment occurs when an employee is subjected to unwanted conduct relating to one or more Protected Characteristic which has the purpose or effect of either violating the employee’s dignity or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating, or offensive environment for the employee.
  4. Victimisation – Victimisation means being ‘punished’ for reporting something at work which you believe is unfair such as being discriminated against.


Are you being discriminated against?

If you believe that you are being treated unfairly at work because of one of the above protected characteristics, you may have a discrimination claim. Please contact Oakwood Solicitors as soon as possible to speak to one of our employment advisors.


Should I raise a grievance?

Employees are expected to raise a grievance in order to resolve a work related dispute before going to tribunal and if they do not then any compensation awarded may be reduced by 25%.

Employees should follow the grievance procedure in their Staff Handbook. If you do not have a Staff Handbook, why not take a look at our guidance on raising a Grievance in the workplace.

Please keep in mind that there are strict time limits to pursue claims in the Employment Tribunal. Please read below for more information on time limits.


I have raised a grievance and in doing so, matters have become worse at work. What can I do now?

Many claims of victimisation arise as a result of a grievance being raised.  An employer may be resentful about the fact that you raised a formal complaint which may result in you being subjected to victimisation.

If you are being victimised for raising a grievance in relation to the way you are being treated at work, please contact Oakwood Solicitors Ltd to see if we can help.


Do I need to collect any evidence of discrimination?

Collecting evidence is hugely beneficial to your claim.  It is important to keep a chronology of events to work out your time limit for submitting your claim in the tribunal. Please read below for more information on time limits.


Would I need to resign to make my claim?

It is not necessary to resign from your job to make a claim for discrimination. However, If you feel like you have no option but to resign, you may have a claim for Constructive Dismissal.


I think I am being discriminated against? What should I do now?

If you believe that you have been discriminated against because of a protected characteristic, why not get in touch today as we do not charge for initial enquiries. Choose one of the methods on the right-hand side of this page, or call us on 0113 200 9787 to find out how we can help you.


Why use Oakwood Solicitors Ltd to make your case?

If you have been subjected to workplace discrimination, you should not have to deal with this alone. Why not contact Oakwood Solicitors Ltd today to see if we can navigate you through this difficult time.

We have a dedicated team of solicitors and paralegals who have many years’ experience between them in running cases of this nature. They are highly trained to deal with all aspects of Employment law.


If you wish to pursue your claim to the Employment Tribunal

Generally, an employee must start ACAS Early Conciliation within three months less a day from the incident or decision that they wish to complain to their employer about, even if a grievance or grievance appeal process is still ongoing.

If an employee does not start ACAS Early Conciliation within that time period then they may be prevented from bringing a claim against their employer before an Employment Tribunal. It is important that you seek legal advice as soon as you are able to ensure that you do not inadvertently pass the time frame in which you have to bring a claim before an Employment Tribunal.

Even if you do not wish to pursue your claim in an Employment Tribunal, there could be other legal remedies available. Please contact Oakwood Solicitors Ltd for further advice.


Pursuing a discrimination claim in the Employment Tribunal

If you believe that you have experienced discrimination in the workplace, please contact Oakwood Solicitors Ltd as soon as possible. Choose one of the methods on the right-hand side of this page, or call us on 0113 200 9787 to find out how we can help you.

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