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Employment Law

Gender Discrimination in The Workplace

There are laws to protect you against gender discrimination in the workplace. If you believe you have been unfairly treated at work because of your gender, our experienced discrimination and harassment lawyers are here to help you.

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What is gender discrimination in the workplace?

Gender discrimination is when an employee, whether a man or woman, is treated unfairly because of their gender.

Under the Equality Act 2010, ‘gender’ is one of nine protected characteristics. That means it is illegal to discriminate against somebody because of their gender.

Discrimination on the grounds of gender should not be confused with discrimination against someone because of their sexual orientation, as ‘sexual orientation’ is a separate protected characteristic under the Act.

An employer must make sure their company’s processes and policies do not unfairly discriminate against employees. This includes:

  • Education and training
  • Promotion
  • Pay and benefits
  • Recruitment
  • Redundancy and dismissal
  • Terms and conditions of employment


What are the types of gender discrimination in the workplace?

Types of discrimination in the workplace are:

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This is when an employee is treated unfavourably because of their gender. For example, they are not offered a promotion because they are a woman.

If there is an umbrella policy in place which may cause some employees to be more disadvantaged than others. For example, if all employees are suddenly expected to work on Saturday mornings, this could discriminate against those who do not have adequate childcare.

An example of victimisation is an employee being treated poorly because they have brought a complaint against their employer for gender discrimination.

This could involve comments or jokes of a sexual nature that make somebody feel uncomfortable or humiliated.

What laws protect you against gender discrimination in the workplace?

The main law that protects you against gender discrimination is the Equality Act 2010.

It is worth noting that under the Act, it is illegal for an employer to discriminate against an employee because they have responsibilities as a carer. An employee who looks after somebody who is elderly or disabled is protected because they are associated with the person who is elderly or disabled.


Equal Pay

You are protected from gender discrimination by the Equal Pay Act 1970. Under the Act, you have the right to the same pay as someone of the opposite sex who works for the same employer and:

  • doing the same work as you, or
  • doing work which is at an equivalent level because it involves a similar amount of effort, skill and responsibility


What can you do about gender discrimination in the workplace?

If you have suffered gender discrimination in the workplace, the first step is to follow your company’s grievance procedure.

If you do not achieve a satisfactory outcome, the next step is to register your discrimination claim with the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS). It is advisable to act fast because typically, you have just three months less one day from the date the discrimination took place to commence action.

Our gender discrimination lawyers at Davisons Law can file a claim for you at an employment tribunal where early conciliation fails.

Talk to a gender discrimination lawyer

If you are experiencing gender discrimination in the workplace, please talk to our sympathetic and knowledgeable lawyers. We will work with you to try and achieve the best outcome possible.

We can support you through your employer’s grievance procedures and the ACAS early conciliation scheme.

Should your case reach an employment tribunal, we will support you throughout and seek a fair level of compensation for both your personal and financial losses.

Have any questions or need any help?

Our team of specialist lawyers are experts in their field. Be confident in their advice and decisions to help get the right outcome for you. Contact us today to see how we can help