PUBLIC SERVICE EQUALITY DUTY
What is the PSED?
The Equality Act 2010 introduced a single, general duty for public bodies, including schools, and which extends to all ‘protected characteristics’ – race, disability, sex, age, religion or belief, sexual orientation, pregnancy and maternity and gender reassignment.
There are three main elements within the act and in carrying out our functions, as a school, we must have regard for the need to:
1. Eliminate discrimination and other conduct prohibited by the act.
2. Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
3. Foster good relations across all characteristics – between people who share a protected characteristic and people who do not share it.
It should be noted that age is a relevant characteristic for schools when considering their duties as an employer but not in relation to pupils. The PSED replaces the previous three sets of separate duties to promote disability, race and gender equality. All schools must have ‘due regard’ to the three elements. Therefore whenever significant decisions are being made, or policies being developed or reviewed, the school will consider carefully the equalities implications.