Beware of these three discrimination traps when recruiting, warns the EE Act

Simangele Mzizi, Fsp Business, 13 Aug. 2014

Tags: employment equity act, ee act, discrimination

In terms of the Employment Equity Act (EE Act), you can’t discriminate against potential employees.

What’s unfortunate is that some employers devise ways to disguise discriminatory practices by including harmless looking methods and criteria in their recruitment and selection policies, procedures and practices.

This is against the law – don’t do it in your workplace because it’ll result in steep penalties.

In fact, the EE Act urges you to beware of these three discrimination traps when recruiting in your workplace.

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Three discrimination traps to avoid when recruiting

#1: Setting unreasonable working hours

If you unnecessarily make late working hours an essential criteria, you could be indirectly discriminating against mothers who need to leave work to be with their children.

The Labour Law for Managers Loose Leaf Service warns that whether you practice indirect discrimination on purpose or not, you’re opening your company up to strong legal action.

#2: Discriminating on religious grounds

An employer who’s prejudiced against Jews may, for example, create a job requirement that work on Saturdays is obligatory. Jewish applicants who can’t work on Saturdays would then not be able to apply.

While Saturday work is the disguise, the real reason for this requirement is religious discrimination.

#3: Being discriminatory when it becomes to dress code

Requiring employees to wear a uniform that reveals the wearer’s arms and legs could make it impossible for many Moslem women to apply for the job. If you can’t prove that wearing the uniform’s a real and inherent requirement of the job, courts could see it as a ‘veiled’ discriminatory practice.

Well there you have it. The courts have a zero tolerance for discrimination in the workplace. So take the EE Act’s advise and beware of these three discrimination traps when recruiting or risk the weight of the law.

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