The Equal Pay Act 1970 provides an equality clause which is implied in to the contracts of men and women employed in Great Britain. The effect of the equality clause is that where any term of the woman's contract is, or becomes, less favourable to her than a term of a similar kind in the contract under which a man is employed, that term of the woman's contract is modified so as to make it not less favourable; where the woman's contract does not include a beneficial term that forms part of the man's contract, the woman's contract is treated as including the missing term.
It operates in three situations: 1. Where a woman is employed on like work with a man in the same employment; 2. Where a woman is employed on work rated as equivalent with that of a man in the same employment; 3. Where a woman is employed on work that is of equal value to that of a man in the same employment. Sex Discrimination Act: Sex discrimination can be direct, where a woman is treated less favourably than a man or vice versa, sometimes it can be a married person who is treated less favourably than a single person.
The test is whether the person would have received the same treatment but for his or her sex or marital status. Sex discrimination can also be indirect. This would occur if a requirement or condition were imposed upon a woman or married person that also applies to a man or single person but has a detrimental effect on the woman or married person because she or he cannot comply with it. Sex discrimination can also take place when a person is discriminated against because they have had or intend to have a gender transformation.
Race Relations Act: The Race Relations Act 1976 applies the principles of unlawfulness to discrimination and victimisation about a person's colour, race, nationality, ethnic origins or national origins. The Commission for Racial Equality was established as a result of the 1976 Act. Its role is to work towards the elimination of discrimination, to promote equality of opportunity and to keep under review the working of the Act.
The Commission issued a code of practice on race relations that can be taken into account by Employment Tribunals. Racial discrimination can take place directly, indirectly or by way of victimisation. When a Tribunal or court decides whether discrimination has taken place, the position of the alleged victim will be compared with someone of similar ability and qualifications in similar circumstances. Direct discrimination is where on racial grounds a person is treated less favourably than other people would be.