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Equality and diversity

Equality legislation protects individuals from discrimination on the basis of their age, religion, disability, gender, race or sexual orientation. On this page you find articles, books and online resources providing background information and guidance.

What's on this page?

  • Legal Alert
  • Briefings
  • Online articles
  • Small Business Update
  • Useful links
  • Articles and books in the Library collection

Contact the Library

Expert help for your enquiries and research.

E  library@icaew.com

T  +44 (0)20 7920 8620
F  +44 (0)20 7920 8621

See also

We also maintain separate web pages on age discriminationdisability discrimination and employment tribunals.

Featured article

Charge of the white brigade
Some routine business practices need to be carefully examined to see how they promote or defeat inclusion. These include less formal meeting structures, the tendency of men to interrupt women disproportionately, and the tyranny of teams in which individual credit is often obscured.

You will need to be logged-in to the website to access this article.

Featured book

Diversity and inclusion guide for businesses
(Michael Page, 2015)
Looks at ways to create, monitor and improve a diverse workplace for the benefit of your firm.

To borrow this book please contact the Library.

Legal Alert

Legal Alert is a monthly checklist from Atom Content Marketing highlighting new and pending laws, regulations, codes of practice and rulings that could have an impact on your business.

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Briefings are four-page guides from Atom Content Marketing written for the busy practitioner, director and entrepreneur providing concise, practical advice on core business issues.



Discrimination against employees on any grounds other than their ability to do the job is a bad idea - and could also be illegal. If an employee or potential employee brings a discrimination case against your business, you could be tied up in costly and time-consuming

Disclaimer: These publications from Atom Content Marketing are for general guidance only, for businesses in the United Kingdom governed by the laws of England. Atom Content Marketing, expert contributors and ICAEW (as distributor) disclaim all liability for any errors or omissions.

Online articles

The library provides access to a range of articles in full text from leading business, finance and management journals. Access to articles is provided to logged-in ICAEW members, ACA students and other entitled users subject to suppliers' terms of use.

Why diversity programs fail

Sheds light on what doesn’t work and what does with regards to diversity programs. Research suggests companies get better results when they ease up on the control tactics. Effective solutions include engaging managers in solving the problem, increasing on the-job contact with female and minority workers and promoting social accountability.

When will it change?

The accounting profession has a long way to go in attracting, retaining and including both minorities and women. Executives at the top accounting firms all agree that diversity in the profession is far from reaching an acceptable balance — a reality reflected in the numbers.

Legally-compliant long-service award schemes

The culture of long-service awards and bonus culture is well established in the UK, but how can employers ensure they stay on the right side of the law on diversity in the workplace?

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Small Business Update

Small Business Update is a monthly magazine for SMEs with articles covering the latest regulatory developments, practical advice and hot topics.

Manage flexible working


If you employ workers with children or with care responsibilities, you might receive requests for flexible working or be required to give those workers additional unpaid leave to enable them to fulfil their parental or caring responsibilities.

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Useful links


Equality Act 2010
Full text of the Act as enacted and revised, with explanatory notes. The Act came into force on 1 October 2010 and aims ‘to deliver a simple, modern and accessible framework of discrimination law which protects individuals from unfair treatment and promotes a fair and more equal society’.

The ICAEW Library holds numerous print publications on discrimination law and also subscribes to electronic databases with the complete text of UK legislation. For information on accessing these resources, please contact the Library.


Employers: Preventing discrimination
Guidance from GOV.UK on employers' responsibilities, covering recruitment, pay and discrimination during employment.

The Equality Act: employers' guidance
A collection of guides from the Equality and Human Rights Commission on employers' rights and duties under the Equality Act 2010.

Equality (Acas)
Guidance and a range of practical resources on the Equality Act 2010 from the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service.

Gender Pay Gap Reporting (Acas)
Guidance developed for employers who need to comply with the new reporting obligations effective from 6 April 2017. Prepared by Acas and the Government Equality Office.

Diversity and equality (CIPD)
Good practice and guidance on diversity and equality including factsheets, survey reports, research, books and courses from the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

Make a claim to an employment tribunal
Step-by-step guide to making a claim, produced by GOV.UK.

Diversity and inclusion guide for businesses
Provides tips, best practice examples and a handy checklist for implementing, managing and monitoring D&I initiatives. Produced by the Professional and Business Services Council (PBSC).


UK Equality and Diversity Forum (EDF)
A network of national organisations committed to promoting equality and the elimination of any form of discrimination. The website offers a range of resources for guidance and campaigning.

Reports and surveys

Women on boards
GOV.UK collection of documents relating to women on boards, including the Lord Davies review of 2011 and subsequent reports on progress.

Sex and power
Survey conducted by the UK Equality and Human Rights Commission in 2011, looking at women in positions of power and influence.

Gender diversity in the boardroom (CIPD)
Survey of the presence of women on boards with recommendations for addressing gender imbalance.

Industrial Cases Reports Express (ICLR)
Free case summaries involving employment law, discrimination and other subjects.

Increasing gender diversity to boost performance (ACCA)
Briefing from ACCA for finance and HR leaders on increasing value through gender diversity. Published 2015.

Inquiry into sex discrimination in the finance sector
Research report from the UK Equality and Human Rights Commission published in March 2009. The study surveys the pay, policies and practices of organisations within the financial services sector.

Global diversity and inclusion: Perceptions, practices and attitudes
Results of a 2008 study by the Economist Intelligence Unit on behalf of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). The study is based on interviews with more than 500 senior executives and aims to 'provide a deeper understanding of diversity and inclusion issues on a global scale, and to offer insights into diversity and inclusion best practices worldwide.' It also looks at the diversity readiness of 47 countries by compiling a Global Diversity Readiness Index.

Articles and books in the Library collection

To find out how you can borrow books from the Library please see our guide to book loans.

You can obtain copies of articles or extracts of books and reports by post, fax or email through our document supply service.

Can't find what you are looking for?

If you're having trouble finding the information you need, ask the Library & Information Service. Contact us by telephone on +44 (0)20 7920 8620, by web chat or by email at library@icaew.com.

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