Discrimination describes the unfair treatment of an individual or group of individuals based on a group to which they belong or one of their protected characteristics.
There are now laws that have been passed to protect employees from discrimination in the workplace. These laws ensure that everybody is offered the same job seeker opportunities and receives the same benefits when in employment.
As an employer, being able to recognize discrimination in your workplace is important to maintain the safety of your staff. Protecting your employees from discrimination improves your company culture, and enhances employee satisfaction and engagement.
There are multiple types of discrimination that you need to be aware of as an employer. The most common forms of discrimination include:
- Race or nationality
- Language or culture
- Disabilities or special needs
Putting a Stop to Discrimination in Your Workplace
All of the above forms of discrimination involve treating somebody unfairly because of one or more protected characteristics. If you notice that an employee is being treated differently or receiving negative comments based on their personal characteristics, it’s vital that you take immediate action.
In some cases, you may need to take legal action against a perpetrator if they are treating somebody else unkindly based on a protected characteristic. You’ll need to hire a specialist discrimination lawyer to file a legal claim against somebody or a group of people.
Here are some top tips to prevent discrimination in your workplace.
Implement Anti-Discrimination Policies
By law, employers must implement a number of anti-discrimination policies and regulations to protect their employees. It’s important to make your policies clear to all of your team members so that everybody is aware of what is and isn’t acceptable.
Your anti-discrimination policies should promote the fair treatment of every employee, regardless of who they are or the groups with which they identify. Make sure to regularly review your policies and make updates as and when necessary.
Educate Your Employees
One of the leading causes of discrimination in the workplace is a lack of understanding of individual differences. As an employer, it’s your responsibility to educate your employees on the proper ways to treat others and encourage inclusivity in your workplace.
As part of your training for new and existing employees, make sure to include lots of information about your anti-discrimination policies and the consequences of failing to abide by these policies. When you update your anti-discrimination rules, inform your employees as soon as possible.
Your training should include education about what discrimination is, the details of your anti-discrimination policies, and how your employees can report discriminatory behavior in the workplace.
Hire a Range of Individuals
One of the most effective ways to put a stop to discrimination in your workplace is to hire a wide range of people. When your team is diverse and varied, your workplace is more likely to be inclusive and accepting of everybody, regardless of their background or protected characteristics.