DiscriminationAge discrimination is based on stereotyped prejudices. For example, younger workers perhaps being less committed and older workers more loyal would be seen as being ageist. A younger applicant could be considered a cheaper option and experienced older candidates the more expensive option (higher salary, pension, benefits costs, etc). Age discrimination also works the other way. An interviewer may consider an applicant too young, particularly if the job requires managing others who may be older.
- Sexual: Interviewers should not refer to a person’s marital status, children they may have now or in the future, or their sexual preference. All could be grounds for discrimination. An interviewer might be deemed to view a person being married favourably in that they may see an applicant as being more stable. Alternatively, unfavourably – they may see a conflict of interest between a single person having more time to devote to the job over a married person who might have to juggle family commitments.
- Religion: Asking what religion a person practices or how can be a sign of religious discrimination. It also extends to a person’s association with someone of a particular religion or belief. However, it is acceptable for an employer to explain the requirements of the job and the business need and ask if the interviewee can meet them i.e. asking about availability for weekend working or shift working.
- Racial: The Equality Act 2010 makes it unlawful for an employer to discriminate against someone because of race which includes:
- Nationality Ethnic or
- National origins Under the Act, it does not matter whether the discrimination was made on purpose or not. What counts is whether, through an employer’s actions, a candidate is treated less favourably than someone else because of race. However, it is important to note that the employer does have a right to ask whether the candidate is legally entitled to work in the UK. Neither is it illegal for an employer to choose whether or not to select someone based on their fluency in English.