Equal Opportunities and Diversity Policy

1. Policy Statement

Shared Service Architecture Ltd (“the Company”) is committed to achieving a working environment which provides equality of opportunity and freedom from unlawful discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, marital status, disability, religious beliefs, age or sexual orientation. This Policy aims to remove unfair and discriminatory practices within the Company and to encourage full contribution from its diverse community. The Company is committed to actively opposing all forms of discrimination.

The Company also aims to provide a service that does not discriminate against its clients and customers in the means by which they can access the services and goods supplied by the Company. The Company believes that all employees and clients are entitled to be treated with respect and dignity.

2. Objectives of this Policy

2.1 To reduce, stop and prevent all forms of unlawful discrimination.

2.2 To ensure that recruitment, promotion, training, development, assessment, redundancy and service provision are determined on the basis of capability, qualifications, experience, skills and productivity.

3.  Designated Officer

Name: Emanuel Gatt
Position: Managing Director
Telephone Number: 0845 658 9783

4. Definition of Discrimination

Discrimination is unequal or differential treatment which leads to one person being treated more or less favourably than others are, or would be, treated in the same or similar circumstances on the grounds of race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, marital status, disability, religion, age, sexual orientation. Discrimination may be direct or indirect.

5.  Types of Discrimination

5.1 Direct Discrimination
This occurs when a person or a policy intentionally treats a person less favourably than another on the grounds of colour, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, marital status, disability, religion, age, or sexual orientation.

5.2 Indirect Discrimination
This is the application of a policy, criterion or practice to a person which the employer would apply to others but which is such that:

  • It is it detrimental to a considerably larger proportion of people from the group that the person the employer is applying it to represents;
  • The employer cannot justify the need for the application of the policy on a neutral basis; and
  • The person to whom the employer is applying it suffers detriment from the application of the policy.

Example: A requirement that all employees must be 6ft tall would indirectly discriminate against employees with an oriental ethnic origin, as they are less likely to be able to fulfil this requirement if that requirement is not justified by the position.

6. Unlawful Reasons for Discrimination

6.1 Gender and Marital Status
It is not permissible to treat a person less favourably on the grounds of their gender or the fact they are married. This applies to both men and women. Sexual harassment of men and women can be found to constitute sex discrimination. For example, asking a woman during an interview if she is planning to have any (more) children constitutes discrimination on the ground of gender.

6.2 Age
It is not permissible to treat a person less favourably because of their age. This applies to people of all ages.  This does not currently apply to the calculation of redundancy payments.

6.3 Disability
It is not permissible to treat a disabled person less favourably than a non-disabled person.  Reasonable adjustments must be made to give the disabled person as much access to the service and ability to be employed, trained, or promoted as a non-disabled person.

6.4 Race, Colour, Nationality and Ethnic Origin
It is not permissible to treat a person less favourably because of their race, the colour of their skin, their nationality or their ethnic origin.

6.5 Sexual Orientation
It is not permissible to treat a person less favourably because of their sexual orientation. For example, an employer cannot refuse to employ a person because s/he is homosexual, or transsexual.

6.6 Religion or Belief
It is not permissible to treat a person less favourably because of their religious beliefs or their religion.

7. Reasonable Adjustments

The Company has a duty to make reasonable adjustments to facilitate the employment of a disabled person.  These may include:

7.1 Making adjustments to premises;

7.2 Re-allocating some or all of a disabled employee’s duties;

7.3 Transferring a disabled employee to a role better suited to their disability;

7.4 Relocating a disabled employee to a more suitable office;

7.5 Giving a disabled employee time off work for medical treatment or rehabilitation;

7.6 Providing training or mentoring for a disabled employee;

7.7 Supplying or modifying equipment, instruction and training manuals for disabled employees; or

7.8 Any other adjustments that the Company considers reasonable and necessary provided such adjustments are within the financial means of the Company.

If an employee has a disability and feels that any such adjustments could be made by the Company, they should contact the Designated Officer.

8. Responsibility for the Implementation of this Policy

The co-operation of all employees is essential for the success of this Policy. However, the ultimate responsibility for achieving the objectives of this Policy, and for ensuring compliance with relevant Legislation and Codes of Practice, lies with the Company. Senior employees are expected to follow this Policy and ensure that all employees, subcontractors and agents do the same.

All employees, subcontractors and agents of the Company are required to act in a way that does not subject any other employees or clients to direct or indirect discrimination on the grounds of race, colour, nationality, ethnic origin, gender, marital status, disability, religion, age or sexual orientation.

Employees may be held independently and individually liable for their discriminatory acts by an Employment Tribunal and ordered to pay compensation to the person who has suffered as a result of discriminatory acts.

9. Acting on Discriminatory Behaviour

In the event that an employee is the subject or perpetrator of, or witness to, discriminatory behaviour, please refer to the company handbook on the intranet.

10.  Advice and Support on Discrimination

Employees may contact their employee or trade union representative if access to such an individual is possible.

Other contacts include:

Equality and Human Rights Commission
Arndale House
The Arndale Centre
M4 3AQ

3 More London
Riverside Tooley Street

3rd Floor,
3 Callaghan Square
CF10 5BT

The Optima Building
58 Robertson Street
G2 8DU

Telephone (England): 0845 604 6610
Telephone (Wales): 0845 604 8810
Telephone (Scotland): 0845 604 5510

Website: www.equalityhumanrights.com

Citizens Advice Bureau
Myddleton House
115-123 Pentonville Road
N1 9LZ

Website: www.citizensadvice.org.uk

Community Legal Services Direct

Telephone: 0845 345 4 345
Website: www.clsdirect.org.uk

11. The Extent of the Policy

11.1 The Company seeks to apply this Policy in the recruitment, selection, training, appraisal, development and promotion of all employees.  The Company seeks to ensure that all sub-contractors and agents act in accordance with this Policy.  The Company accepts no liability for the actions of sub-contractors and agents.  The Company offers goods and services in a fashion that complies with the spirit of this Policy.

11.2 This Policy does not form a part of any employment contract with any employee and its contents are not to be regarded by any person as implied, collateral or express terms to any contract made with the Company.

11.3 The Company reserves the right to amend and update this Policy at any time.

This policy has been approved & authorised by:

Name: Emanuel Gatt
Position: Managing Director
Date: 01/12/2008