Special Melted Products Ltd.
Sheffield S4 7UR
Policy – Equality
We are committed to eliminating discrimination amongst our workforce. Our objective is to create a working environment in which there is no unlawful discrimination and all decisions are based on merit.
• Difference defines us and makes high performance possible
• We aim to attract, develop and retain the best talent
• We celebrate difference and will invest to develop Cultural Awareness
We respect our colleagues personal choices and Heritage
• Our innovative approach to flexible and family friendly work practices supports our aims for employee well being
This policy has been agreed with senior management, employee representatives and recognised trade unions and has the full support of our board of directors.
Status of this policy
This policy does not give contractual rights to individual employees. The company reserves the right to alter any of its terms at any time although we will notify you in writing of any changes.
This policy applies to all employees, workers, agency workers, contractors and job applicants.
Responsibility for this policy
The Head of Human Resources is responsible for this policy.
What is discrimination?
Discrimination is unlawful when it takes place on one of the following grounds (the ‘protected characteristics’):
- gender re-assignment
- marriage and civil partnership
- pregnancy and maternity
- ethnic or national origin
- religion or belief
- sexual orientation
Discrimination can take a number of forms:
- Direct discrimination is when someone is treated worse than someone else because of a protected characteristic. For example, it would be direct discrimination if a manager excludes an employee from a training course because she is gay.
- It is also direct discrimination when someone is treated worse than someone else because they associate with someone with a protected characteristic or because they are perceived to have a protected characteristic. For example, it would be direct discrimination if an employee ostracised a colleague because the colleague has a gay flatmate or because he thinks the colleague is gay.
- Indirect discrimination is when an apparently neutral practice or requirement disproportionately disadvantages one group and cannot be justified by the needs of the business. For example, imposing a requirement that job applicants must speak fluent English disproportionately disadvantages non-English groups and would be unlawful unless it could be justified on genuine business grounds.
- It is also discrimination when a disabled person is treated unfavourably because of something connected to their disability and this cannot be justified by the needs of the business or when the business fails to make reasonable adjustments for a disabled person.
Our responsibilities and approach
We aim to avoid discrimination in all aspects of employment and recruitment. Our approach to different aspects of employment and recruitment is set out below.
Recruitment and selection
We aim to ensure that job requirements and job selection criteria are clear and based only what is required to get the job done effectively. We will avoid making stereotypical assumptions based on protected characteristics about who is able to do a particular job.
We aim to ensure that no job applicant is placed at a disadvantage by practices or requirements which disproportionately disadvantage protected groups and which are not justified by the demands of the job.
For all jobs, we will draw up a clear and accurate job description and person specification to ensure that we remain focussed on what the job involves and the skills, experience and qualifications which are relevant and necessary to do the job. If we hold interviews, we will try to ensure that more than one person conducts them to ensure that we avoid unintentional bias.
We will not ask for personal or irrelevant information in interviews. We will focus instead on whether someone has the relevant skills, qualities, behaviours and experience to do the job.
Promotion, training and appraisals
Promotion and training decisions will be made on the basis of merit. We will not unlawfully discriminate against any employee in making promotion or training decisions. We believe all employees should have an equal opportunity to progress and develop.
We will advertise promotion and transfer opportunities widely, including deputising opportunities and secondments which could lead to permanent promotion. We will try to ensure that training and development opportunities are made known to all relevant employees. The Company does however reserve the right to make appointments to internal candidates based on succession planning and development information without advertising the assignment or role.
Working conditions and terms of employment
We will try to accommodate cultural or religious practices such as prayer requirements where we reasonably can. A prayer room is available for use within break times. Separate fridge shelves can be organised for food that needs to be kept separate.
We aim to ensure that our terms of employment, benefits, facilities and policies are free from unlawful discrimination.
We will ensure that decisions made under our disciplinary, grievance performance management / improvement and attendance management policies are carried out fairly and without discrimination.
We will open up as many jobs as possible to flexible working arrangements in the context of a modern manufacturing facility.
Termination of employment
We will ensure that we avoid discrimination in making decisions about dismissal or redundancy.
Where possible, we will ensure that any manager’s decision to dismiss an employee is endorsed by another manager and the HR department. We will encourage leavers to give feedback about their employment in exit interviews.
We will make adjustments to accommodate disabled employees where possible and reasonable. For example, we can provide extra equipment or support, we can re-arrange duties and we can make changes to our premises in appropriate cases. If you think you may have a disability, you are encouraged to tell the business about this so that we can explore what adjustments might be appropriate.
Training on equalities
We will train our managers and those responsible for recruitment on understanding and avoiding discrimination.
Your rights and responsibilities
You have the right not to experience unlawful discrimination in our workplace. You also have a responsibility to understand this policy and help us to implement it.
All employees including workers, agency workers and contractors have a duty not to discriminate against each other and not to help anyone else do so.
Our relationships with visitors, customers and suppliers
You must not discriminate against any of our visitors, customers or suppliers. Equally, we expect our visitors, customers and suppliers not to discriminate against anyone else and we will take appropriate action against any person found to have done so.
What to do if you have been discriminated against
If you believe you may have been discriminated against, please tell us. You can speak informally with your manager or anyone in HR. If you want to make a more formal complaint, you are encouraged to raise the matter through our grievance procedure. If you believe there has been any bullying or harassment, then you should raise the matter through our grievance procedure.
Allegations of potential breaches of this policy will be treated seriously. Employees and contractors who make such allegations in good faith will not be victimised or treated less favourably as a result. However, false allegations of a breach of this policy which are found to have been made in bad faith will be dealt with under our disciplinary procedure.
What will happen if you act in a discriminatory way?
If, after investigation, we decide that you have acted in breach of this policy, you may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including dismissal. This applies to the most senior levels of management as well as to all other employees.
For information about our processing of personal data under this policy, including details of our legal grounds for doing so, how long we retain such personal data, who your personal data is shared with, your rights under data protection law and who you should contact if you have any concerns, please see our employee privacy notice, which can be accessed via the intranet or a copy obtained from HR.
Policy review and promotion
We will promote and publicise our equality policy as widely as possible using our intranet, website, induction packs and notice boards.
We will review our equality policy on a regular basis.