Race Discrimination

The Equality Act 2010

Under the Equality Act 2010 (EqA 2010) people are legally protected against discrimination due to their race. This includes their skin colour, nationality, or ethnic origins.

It covers employment, education, housing, advertising, the provision of goods and services, and any activity carried out by a public authority such as the police, prisons, the NHS, local authorities and government departments.

Types of discrimination

Direct discrimination

This is when a person is treated less favourably than someone else would be in the same situation simply because of their race. The less favourable treatment could be because of the person’s actual race, their perceived race, or the race of someone they associate with.

Indirect discrimination

This occurs if a policy, practice or rule applies to everybody but adversely affects people of a particular race.

Indirect race discrimination can be justified in certain circumstances if the organisation or employer can show the discrimination happened as ‘a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim’.


Harassment is where someone behaves in such a way that makes a person feel humiliated, offended or degraded because of their race.


This occurs when an individual is treated badly because they have made a complaint of race discrimination under EqA 2010.

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