The government has, today, published its consultation document on legislation required to comply with the EC Equal Treatment Framework Directive. This requires the UK to introduce legislation prohibiting discrimination on grounds of age, religion or belief, and sexual orientation within the fields of employment and training.
It will also require the extension of some of the provisions of the Race Relations Act 1976 and the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 - the most important one being the removal of the 15-employee 'small employer' exemption.
The government is also considering introducing a single 'Equality Commission' (to replace the EOC, CRE and DRC).
The government summary very kindly points out that the cost of the new legislation will only be £157 per employer, whereas the benefits could amount to up to £567million.
The consultation period finishes at the end of March 2002.
For further information, and a copy of the consultation paper, click here.