Equal Opportunities Policy

Introduction

There are many situations where individuals could be discriminated against, for example because of age, or your sex ,because of sexual orientation, race or religion.

North Cave Village Hall in its equal opportunities policy ensures that  hire of the hall , management and interaction with users is carried out in a none discriminatory fashion.

Types of discrimination

The law on equality talks about two types of discrimination.

  • Direct discrimination, which is when you are treated less favourably because, for example, you are a woman, or of a certain age.
  • Indirect discrimination, can happen where there are rules or conditions, policies or practices that apply to everyone but disadvantage one group of people more than others, without a good reason.
  • In certain cases, discrimination is allowed. For example, to hire the hall the hirer must be over 18yrs of age.

Harassment

Harassment is unwanted behaviour that violates your dignity (is humiliating) or creates an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment.

When discrimination can happen

Discrimination happens when someone is treated worse (‘less favourably’ in legal terms) than another person in the same situation. When you are buying or using goods and services – for example, a person in a wheelchair might be told that they can’t go into the hall  because their wheelchair takes up too much space

Sex discrimination

Two laws aim to make sure that men and women are treated equally:

  • The Sex Discrimination Act 1975 (as amended 1986) makes it unlawful to discriminate against men or women in employment, education, housing or providing goods and services, and also in advertisements for these things. It’s also against the law, but only in work-related matters, to discriminate against someone because they are married or in a civil partnership.

The Equal Pay Act 1970 (as amended 1984) says that women must be paid the same as men when they are doing the same (or broadly similar) work, work rated as equivalent under a job evaluation scheme or work of equal value. European law also says that women and men should receive equal pay for equal work.

Buying and using goods and services

Under the Sex Discrimination Act it is against the law for businesses, (the Village Hall Committee), to discriminate against men or women in the ‘goods, facilities and services’ they provide. This means refusing a service or deliberately not providing it on the same terms and of the same quality. The Act covers things that are free or paid-for, and applies to:

  • shops;
  • public places, such as hotels, restaurants, bars, night-clubs and leisure centres (for example, offering only to women free or cheaper admission or drinks would breach the Sex Discrimination Act);
  • bank accounts, loans, credit cards and insurance;
  • travel and transport services that are public or offered by private companies or travel agents; and
  • services supplied by local authorities (such as leisure services).

Discrimination against men or women may be allowed in certain situations:

  • private members’ clubs;
  • services that are only for men or only for women, to avoid ‘serious embarrassment’ (for example, women-only saunas);
  • voluntary organisations, care homes and charities that provide services only for men or only for women; and
  • insurance policies where it can be shown that women are a better or a worse insurance risk than men (though this is being reviewed, and may not be allowed in the future).

Due regard is therefore given by all the trustees of the North Cave Village Hall Committee to ensure that their actions are non-discriminatory.

Review May 2010