1.1 Highlander Ltd is an equal opportunities employer. This means that it is the Company's policy that there should be no discrimination against or harassment of any employee or job applicant either directly or indirectly on the grounds of:
- Race, colour, nationality or national or ethnic origin ("race");
- Sex or marital status;
- Disability (e.g., a long term mental or physical impairment);
- Sex change status;
- Sexual orientation;
- Religion or philosophical belief;
- Political belief;
- Trade union activity or
1.2 The Company's policy is to
- Eliminate, as far as is reasonably possible, discrimination and harassment from the workplace;
- Encourage all its employees to take an active role against all forms of discrimination and harassment;
- Deter employees from participating in discriminatory behaviour or harassment;
- Demonstrate to all employees that they can rely upon the Company's support in cases of discrimination or harassment at work.
1.3 The Company is fully committed to providing a good and harmonious working environment that offers equal treatment and equal opportunities for all employees and where every employee is treated with respect and dignity. The Company's aim is that remuneration, recruitment, promotion and retention should not be affected by irrelevant considerations and stereotyping.
1.4 The Company recognises that the provision of equal opportunities in the workplace is not only good management practice, it also makes sound business sense. The Company's equal opportunities policy will help all employees develop their full potential and the talents and resources of the workforce will be fully utilised to maximise the efficiency of the organisation.
1.5 Whilst the Company recognises that the overall responsibility for the effective operation of this policy lies with the Board of Directors, all employees, whatever their position within the Company, have some measure of responsibility for ensuring its effective implementation in their day to day activities and working relationships with colleagues.
1.6 Employees should ensure that:
- They co-operate with any measures introduced to develop equal opportunities;
- They respect the sensitivities of others;
- They refrain from taking discriminatory actions or decisions which are contrary to either the letter or spirit of this policy and, for employees of managerial status, that they ensure that those who report to them also comply with the policy;
- They do not instruct, induce, or attempt to induce or pressurise other employees to act in breach of this policy;
- Employees who make complaints of breaches of this policy are treated fairly and responsively both when the complaint is made and thereafter.
1.7 Breaches of the Company's equal opportunities policy and procedures and any unfair or unlawful discrimination will not be tolerated and will be dealt with under the company's disciplinary procedures. In serious cases, this could lead to dismissal of the relevant individual.
1.8 The policy shall also apply to employees of contractors working at the Company's premises.
General application of Policy
Recruitment and Selection
The selection process is of crucial importance in this policy and must be carried out according to objective job-related criteria which must be subject to regular review. The effectiveness of the policy will be determined to a great extent by this aspect of employment procedure. The Company will endeavour through appropriate training to ensure that employees making selection decisions will not discriminate whether consciously or unconsciously in making these decisions.
Equal opportunities must be integrated into all training concerned with selection skills, staff assessment, counselling, staff development and the management or supervision of staff. The importance of equal opportunities in the field of customer care initiatives is also recognised. The Company's policy will form part of the induction training of all staff.
It is in the Company's interest to provide equal opportunities for promotion to all employees. All promotion decisions must be made in accordance with objective selection criteria.
Grievance and Discipline
Employees who believe that they have experienced unfair or unlawful discrimination or racist or sexist abuse or harassment should raise their concern through the applicable grievance procedure in their local area. Where such grievances may concern the normal line of supervision or management, individuals may approach the Managing Director.
Examining the effects of policy and programmes of action on a regular and structured basis is a fundamental part of the process of successfully establishing equal opportunities. Personnel data is therefore collected (on an anonymous basis), analysed and interpreted across the company. The objectives of monitoring are:
- to identify areas of and reasons for under-representation of particular groups in the workforce;
- to assess the effect of employment procedures and practices and identify any unintentional impact on particular groups;
- to enable appropriate corrective action to take place, including defining targets for future change;
- to enable the Company to review and reshape its equal opportunities policy and programme of action.
This policy and accompanying action programmes must be communicated widely and effectively throughout the workforce and to potential employees.
It is the responsibility of management at all levels to ensure that such communication takes place.