Fawcett Society publishes 'Sex Discrimination Law Review'


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The Fawcett Society has published a 'Sex Discrimination Law Review' to mark the centenary year of women being granted the right to vote.

It examines whether sex discrimination law in the UK is fit for purpose. Although the review notes that progress has been made towards gender equality, it emphasises that much needs to be done.

It makes a number of recommendations to aid the close of the gender pay gap between men and women. These include mandatory equal pay audits for employers of 250 people or more, the reintroduction of equal pay questionnaires in employment tribunal proceedings, and injury to feelings awards for equal pay claims.

Another problem area highlighted by the review is that an estimated 54,000 pregnant women and working mothers are made redundant or pressurised to leave their jobs each year, yet protection from dismissal due to pregnancy and maternity discrimination ends on the last day of maternity leave.

The Fawcett Society proposes that this protection is extended to cover the 6 months after a mother returns to work. Other proposals include a six-month limitation period for discrimination claims related to pregnancy or maternity, a right to reasonable time off and facilities for breastfeeding, six weeks' paternity leave, and "day one" rights to statutory maternity pay, paternity pay and shared parental pay.

This article is taken from HR Law February 2018.

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