Publication of cautions / minor offences and equal opportunities employment law

Comment Chris 2nd June 2016

Is The Law Requiring The Publication Of Cautions / Minor Offences When Applying For A Job Incompatible With Equal Opportunities Employment Law?

Is the government’s policy or UK law requiring the publication of any cautions for minor offences when applying for a job incompatible with equal opportunities employment law which makes it illegal for a prospective employer to discriminate based on race?

For example, if a UK citizen with a caution for a minor offense will show up on DBS check for up to 6 years when applying for certain jobs in the UK. A German citizen, with exactly the same minor offence, committed at the same time will only have to declare that offense for 3 years when applying for the same job as the UK citizen. After the first 3 years there is a 3 year period when the UK citizen would be discriminated against. The German doesn’t need to declare, indeed his/her record has been deleted, whereas the UK citizen would have to declare.

No matter how much the government insists companies should not discriminate on this, and be fair when assessing such situations, there is undoubtedly a human reaction to knowing a candidate has a criminal record which will affect many employment decisions.

Why does this matter?

See above

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