Employment law- Victimisation

To understand what victimisation is, you firstly need to know what rights there are in terms of discrimination law.

Under the Equality Act 2010, employees have the right not to be discriminated against in relation to the following protected characteristics;

  • age;

  • disability;

  • gender reassignment;

  • marriage and civil partnership;

  • pregnancy and maternity;

  • race;

  • religion or belief;

  • sex;

  • sexual orientation.

So, what is victimisation?

Under the Equality Act, victimisation occurs when someone treats you badly (i.e. detrimentally), because it is believed that you have done, or about to do a “protected act” which relates to one or more of the protected characteristics listed above.

The following are the main protected acts:

  • bringing proceedings under the Equality Act 2010, for example, in relation to discrimination;
  • giving evidence or information in connection with proceedings under the Act (i.e assisting a colleague);
  • doing any other thing for the purposes of or in connection with the Act;
  • making an allegation (whether or not express) that someone has contravened the Act.

There must be a sufficient link between the carrying out of a protected act, and the unfair treatment you receive as a result.

So, broadly speaking, you can make a claim of victimisation if you are subjected to a unfair treatment because you have made, or supported, a complaint of discrimination.

We are a leading firm of employment law solicitors, acting for employees and senior executives in the City and throughout the UK. For more information on victimisation and a free consultation, please get in contact on 020 7100 5256 and ask to speak to Philip Landau or any member of the employment team, or email us.


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