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Our legal duties

The Equality Act 2010

The Equality Act 2010 is the UK's discrimination law which protects individuals from unfair treatment and promotes a fairer and more equal society. The act protects people from discrimination, harassment and victimisation in work, education and when accessing services.

The Equality Act 2010 protects anyone who falls into a 'protected characteristic':

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender re-assignment
  • Marriage and civil partnership
  • Race
  • Religion
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation.

Public Sector Equality Duty

The Public Sector Equality Duty came into force across Great Britain on 5 April 2011. The aim of the Equality Duty is to embed equality considerations into the day to day work of public authorities, so that they tackle discrimination and inequality and contribute to making society fairer. It means that public bodies have to consider all individuals when carrying out their day-to-day work - in shaping policy, in delivering services and in relation to their own employees.

The Equality Duty requires the force to show that in the decision-making processes, in service delivery and in our employment practices, we have had due regard to the need to:

  • eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation and any other conduct prohibited by the Act
  • advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it
  • foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it

These are often referred to as the three aims or arms of the general equality duty.

As a public body, we are required to regularly publish equality information which demonstrates our compliance with the Public Sector Equality Duty. These annual reports contain information about:

  • An overview of our equality and diversity priorities
  • Examples of good practice working with our diverse communities
  • Information and data on key equality and diversity areas of work.

Please read our current and past Equality and Diversity Annual Reports.