Regulating for Employment Equality: Is Britain on the Right Road?
British legislation in the area of employment equality has followed a largely positive (albeit uneven and hesitant) regulatory trajectory from 'anti-discrimination' towards equality, and from piecemeal and patchwork coverage towards inclusiveness, integration and intersectionality. There is currently both legislaive reform and new instituion building. The paper critically considers whether current developments are sufficient to address what I identify as weaknesses in the British legislative package and limitations in enforcement approaches. Drawing on the British situation, the paper discusses issues of wider applicability. These include assumptions and theories of equality which underpin legislation; the appropriateness of different regulatory approaches; issues of rights enforcement, and the interaction of legal regulation with employers' policy and practice. The role of business case arguments is considered - both in promoting equality and in preventing legal regulation for equality.
Keywords: Employment Equality, Legal Regulation, Rights Enforcement
Prof. Linda Dickens
Professor of Industrial Relations, Warwick Business School, University of Warwick