New equality laws introduced

by Christopher Evans

Employers will now have to be honest and open about their pay policies under new equality laws introduced by the government.

The Equality Act comes into force today (October 1st) and aims to simplify existing rules by bringing nine separate pieces of legislation together.

It includes a new measure to end salary inequality by preventing the use of secrecy clauses to hide differences in pay between men and women.

In addition, it includes new restrictions in the type of questions employers can ask about disability and health before offering positions to job applicants.

The aim of the law is to put a stop to discrimination against disabled people during the recruitment process.

Women and equality minister Theresa May said: "This move towards transparency is just one part of the Equality Act, which also makes it easier for businesses to comply with discrimination law."

However, the British Chambers of Commerce warned that the legislation will have a one off cost to businesses of £189.2 million.

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Published on: October 1, 2010

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