Equal Opportunities policy statement
purpose of this policy statement is to emphasise the commitment
of the Southern Education and Library Board to securing fair
and equal consideration of applications to the board by persons
seeking to be employed by the board and fair and equal treatment
of persons who are so employed. The statement affirms that
both Management and Unions will rigorously pursue the objectives
and principles set out in the statement and be committed to
promoting equality of opportunity and fair participation within
is the policy of the board that all eligible persons will
have equal opportunity for employment and advancement in the
board, irrespective of perceived religious belief, political
opinion, gender, disability or race. Selection for employment
and advancement will be on the basis of ability, qualifications
and aptitude to carry out the duties of the post.
will be no unlawful discrimination, direct or indirect, against
any person in recruitment, training, promotion or in any other
officers should be aware of the forms which unlawful discrimination
can take, guard against them and avoid any action which might
influence others to discriminate unlawfully.
is a legal framework to protect individuals from unlawful
discrimination. This statement is designed to build on the
statutory position and to reflect the spirit as well as the
letter of the legislation.
existence of law and agreed procedures cannot of themselves
ensure that any policy of non-discrimination will work effectively.
This will be achieved only when officers at all levels critically
examine their attitudes to people and ensure that no trace
of unlawful discrimination is allowed to affect their judgement.
board recognises its obligations under the Fair Employment
Acts (NI) 1976 and 1989, the Sex Discrimination (NI) Orders
1976 and 1988, the Equal Pay Act (NI) 1970 as amended and
the Disabled Persons (Employment) Acts (NI) 1945 and 1960.
discrimination means acting in such a way as to place at a disadvantage or treat
unlawfully any individual because of factors which are irrelevant
in any respect of the employment relationship.
discrimination means treating a person less favourably on the grounds of religion,
political opinion, sex, marital status, disability, race,
or any other criterion which is not relevant or justified
discrimination occurs where a requirement or condition which is not relevant
or justified in law is applied equally, but is of such a nature
as to be unfavourable for particular groups in that a considerably
smaller proportion of the group can comply with it.
Victimisation means treating a person less favourably because they have made
or intend to make a complaint or may have assisted an individual
in asserting their rights under the Fair Employment, Sex Discrimination
or Equal Pay legislation. Individuals have a legal right to
make a complaint without prejudice to their existing, potential
or future employment opportunities.
Harassment means any behaviour, deliberate or otherwise which is offensive
to an individual or group and which may threaten an officer's
job security or create an intimidating work environment.
are more subtle and unconscious forms of unlawful discrimination
which may not easily be identified. These may result from
general assumptions about the capabilities, characteristics
and interests of particular groups or individuals which influence
the way in which they are treated. they may also take the
form of applying conditions or requirements, without considering
whether they operate disproportionately to the disadvantage
of particular groups.
RECRUITMENT AND PROMOTION
an Equal Opportunity Employer the board will endeavour to
reach the widest possible labour market. Public advertisements
and internal trawls will not indicate, or appear to indicate,
an intention to discriminate in selection for recruitment,
promotion or transfer. Nothing will be stated which might
be interpreted as reflecting any form of discrimination. Public
advertisements will not be confined unjustifiably to geographical
areas or media publications which would exclude or disproportionately
reduce the number of applicants from a particular group.
statement promoting the board's Equal Opportunities policy
will be included in all advertisements.
to obtain information on careers within the boards will be
readily available to all existing and potential officers.
criteria and tests used for recruitment or promotion must
be related to job requirements and will be non-discriminatory.
Eligibility criteria will be stated in public advertisements
and internal trawls. Criteria and tests will be reviewed to
ensure that they do not have a disproportionate impact on
particular groups or individuals.
panels will, where possible, consist of male and female members
and be representative of both communities.
panel decisions and reasons for such decisions will be recorded
at each stage of the selection process. All documentation
will be retained for a period of at least three years.
persons partaking or likely to partake in the selection process
will receive training in equal opportunities with regard to
recruitment and selection interviewing.
will be given equal opportunity in training and development
to enable them to acquire necessary skills and give them the
opportunity to achieve their full potential.
carrying out staff appraisal, appraisers will objectively
assess the individual's capabilities, performance and potential.
Appraisal reports will not reflect any assumptions or prejudices
of the appraisal officer about the appraisee.
the siting or re-siting of board offices the 'equal opportunity
dimension' of a location will be taken fully into account
together with all other relevant factors.
COMPLAINTS OF UNLAWFUL DISCRIMINATION
board's grievance procedure is available to all officers of
complaints arise relating to unacceptable conduct of a sexual
nature the procedures laid down in the Code of Practice on
measures to combat sexual harassment in the work place should
who believe they have been unlawfully discriminated against
in appointment, promotion and training etc, should in the
first instance raise the matter with the Personnel Branch
or Equal Opportunities Unit of the board. If they are not
satisfied with the outcome they may seek advice and assistance
|In matters of unlawful discrimination on grounds of sex
or marital status
||Equal Opportunities Commission
|In matters of unlawful discrimination grounds of religious
belief or political opinion
||Fair Employment Commission
|Injustice as a result of maladministration
||The Commissioner for Complaints
should check with the statutory agencies regarding time limits
within which complaints should be lodged.
is the policy of the board that an officer who makes a complaint
in respect of alleged unlawful discrimination or maladministration
will not be subject to any form of victimisation. Acts of
discrimination, victimisation or harassment perpetrated by
an officer of the board against any other officers will result
in disciplinary action.
should be noted that complaints can also be brought against
individuals as well as the board.
Chief Executive of the board is responsible for ensuring that the policy statement
is implemented and reviewed on a regular basis.
Personnel Officer, assisted by the Equal Opportunities Officer, is responsible
for monitoring, co-ordinating and developing the policy through
the board's equal opportunities unit.
managers are responsible for ensuring that all officers for whom they have
responsibility are aware of the board's policy on equal opportunity
and that there is no unlawful discrimination of any kind.
officers of the board have a responsibility to accept personal involvement
in the application of the Equal Opportunities Policy.
copy of this statement will be issued to all officers and
a summary to all potential applicants for employment. Its
aims and objectives will be reflected as appropriate in training
courses, circulars and guidance to recruitment and promotion
panels and will be included in careers literature and job
Staff Commission for Education and Library Boards
has a statutory responsibility for the oversight of matters
connected with the recruitment, training and terms and conditions
of employment of officers of boards and in pursuance of that
statutory responsibility will work actively with the boards
in monitoring the implementation of the policy.
composition of officers, applicants for employment and the
appointees will be monitored on the basis of sex, marital
status, perceived religious affiliation and disability to
measure the effectiveness of this policy. Monitoring provides
an objective view on the existence and progress of equality
board is committed to a process of consultation with recognised
trade unions and staff representatives on the policy and practices
outlined in this statement. These will be regularly reviewed
to ensure that the board's objectives on equality of opportunity
are assessed and such affirmative action as is deemed lawful,
appropriate and necessary will be taken.
policy statement has been agreed by the board with the trade
unions within the Education and Library Service. It has also
been agreed with the Staff Commission for Education and Library
Boards and will be incorporated by the Commission in their
Code of Employment and Promotion Procedures.