Equality Act is not ‘red tape’

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Equality Act is not ‘red tape’

A new government website -Red Tape Challenge-asks people if they Equality Act 2010 should be ‘scrapped’.

07/04/2011

A new government website – Red Tape Challenge – says that regulation (laws) ‘hurt business’ and ‘damage the economy’. The website takes forward the commitment in George Osborne’s Budget in March to reduce ‘regulation’, claiming it was a burden on business. A section of the website asks people if they Equality Act 2010 should be ‘scrapped’.

The government’s website says ‘over the years, regulations – and the inspections and bureaucracy that go with them – have piled up and up. This has hurt business, doing real damage to our economy. And it’s done harm to our society too. When people are confronted by a raft of regulations whenever they try to volunteer or play a bigger part in their neighbourhood, they begin to think they shouldn’t bother.’

We say that equality laws and regulations are not a burden. Already the private sector is exempt from many of the equality provisions that exist in the public sector – the idea that there is burdensome regulation as a result of the Equality Act is ridiculous.

Equality laws and regulations – and their enforcement – are essential to tackle discrimination but they also make societies, organisations, services and business work better.

The site asks if the Equality Act:

‘Should they be scrapped altogether?’ or if it should be ‘merged’ or ‘simplified’, or made better or left alone.

The Equality Act 2010 is not a ‘regulation’. It is a major piece of primary legislation. We urge everyone to go to this website and post a comment supporting the Act. You might want to add that the public sector specific duties – which the government is proposing to weaken – should be strengthened.

The links to the website are below.

Main page http://www.redtapechallenge.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/home/index/

General Regulations - http://www.redtapechallenge.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/crosscut/generalregulations/

Equalities - http://www.redtapechallenge.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/equalities/

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