Equality: Coronavirus

Women and Equalities written question – answered on 5th June 2020.

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Photo of Stella Creasy Stella Creasy Labour/Co-operative, Walthamstow

To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what process has been undertaken to consult civil society, including women and equality rights organisations in relation to the effect of covid-19 outbreak on the operation of the Equality Act.

Photo of Kemi Badenoch Kemi Badenoch The Exchequer Secretary, Minister for Equalities

All the legislative protections against discrimination provided by the Equality Act 2010, including those relating to sex and to pregnancy and maternity as protected characteristics, continue to apply during the covid-19 outbreak period, and the scope of the Act remains unchanged.

The Equality Advisory and Support Service (EASS), the helpline for anyone who believes that they have been discriminated against in the provision of goods, services and public functions, remains open and can provide free bespoke advice and in-depth support, as can Acas (0800 464 0979) in relation to employment discrimination issues.

The EASS can be contacted via its website - www.equalityadvisoryservice.com, by telephone on 0808 800 0082, or by text phone on 0808 800 0084. The EASS may contact a service provider on a customer’s behalf to discuss the scope for meeting the customer’s concern; it also liaises with the Equality and Human Rights Commission, which has powers to enforce the provisions of the Act.

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