It Couldn’t Happen to Me, or Could it…

Imagine a legal demand for £20,000 dropped on your desktop out of the blue, you would either struggle to pay it, or simply not want to pay it. That’s most of us right?

Wrong, that is all of us, as employers, providers of services and individuals, you, and others like you, are at risk now.

The legal framework is in place, the Equalities Act has real teeth and you are responsible for ensuring you comply, your failure to do so has wide-reaching and damaging consequences.

The times they are a changing and the importance of being seen as a “Trans* Friendly Employer” should not be underestimated.

So how much cash have you got put aside?

You may want to ask yourself how much reserve cash you have set aside for when you, your organisation or someone you employ makes that simple slip that means getting embroiled in a case of discrimination.

Discrimination claims are uncapped, and you could inadvertently fall foul of the act through innocence, by not knowing what you don’t know. It is no excuse, that has already been ascertained, you are legally responsible.

Is this just scaremongering?

Well if you think so, walk on by, nothing to see here, the good news is you can save your organisation a few pounds by simply ignoring the need for Trans* awareness, then you can sit and wait, hoping that nothing goes wrong.

Feel free, put your feet up, do nothing…

Or you can minimise the risks of a 5 figure payout and the legal fees and other costs that go along with it by doing something now.

A lack of awareness is no excuse, and that prospective £20,000 or more payout could easily see you massively out-of-pocket. But that is not all, how about…

  • A few thousand in legal fees
  • Tribunal fees
  • Need a Barrister?
  • Brand damage
  • Reputation damage
  • Employee dissatisfaction
  • The impact through social media and the subsequent loss of customers
  • Being seen a bad organisation to work for and do business with

People like you are already ensuring they are up to speed on good practice and a failure in this area could be a ticking time bomb, both for your organisation, the people within it and you.

The Telegraph points out how easily organisations can fall foul of the equalities act.

The ruling which took place in May 2016 is a good example of how the simplest of actions, whether deliberate or accidental can form the basis for a case under the Equalities Act.

What is particularly important is the last paragraph…

“Please do not assume that because you don’t have any trans staff this doesn’t impact on you – you may have trans colleagues that haven’t come out and, if you want to secure the very best talent, you must be seen as a ‘trans friendly’ employer. Simple steps contribute to demonstrating an inclusive culture.”

The success of our previous seminars means we are planning more, these will either be open events to the public or closed events for particular organisations.

If you need information on the practicalities and costs of running in-house learning for your organisation please contact us by e-mail stating the number of possible attendees, your contact details and your location.

For information on our public events being planned for Manchester please use our contact form.

We will be in touch as soon as possible.


The full statistics on payouts and more for 2016 are available here as a PDF.

Posted in PolkaBlog.