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How is our work influencing life in Northern Ireland and delivering equality? Learn more about our policy, legal and research work.

Related work

Employment equality

Women at work - would you like to be involved?

To inform our work, we need to talk to women in Northern Ireland about the key issues preventing women from enjoying full equality and full economic participation. We are keen to hear from women from different backgrounds and to hear about their main issues of concern.  We would also like to hear from groups, including rural women’s groups and special interest groups, who are interested in holding a joint engagement event or developing partnerships.

If you would like to be involved please get in touch with Heather Wilson - or telephone 028 90 500 687.


Gender Equality - Getting a fair share

Gender equality is a key priority for the Commission over the next two years. Following roundtable discussions with the women’s sector, the “Getting a fair share?” initiative was launched at a conference examining the key issue of women’s economic independence in March 2013. 

Monitoring the racial make-up of the workforce

We are pressing for reform of the law to require employers to monitor their workforces by race and ethnicity as well as community background.

Equal pay code

The Equal Pay Code (pdf) which came into effect on 22nd July 2013, gives employers practical guidance on how to promote equality of opportunity and avoid sex discrimination in pay structures.

Working with local government

We work with the Local Government Staff Commission (LGSC) to ensure that equality and diversity are encouraged in the local government workforce.  In Spring 2013  we supported the LGSC  to bring together examples of good practice initiatives and sharing of ideas. See our press release: Local government drive for diversity and inclusion (pdf, 2013)


Survey of Employers’ Satisfaction with Commission services

A survey of NI employers showed an all-time high in awareness of anti-discrimination laws, with 99% knowing about laws in relation to age, religion and politics; 98% about disability and race and 94% about sexual orientation. Levels of satisfaction with Commission services remained at their 2007 level of 86%.

Employability Initiatives

What is ‘employability’?  Employability is the ability to find, get and keep satisfactory work.  Our work on employability focuses on the groups of people protected by equality law, such as disabled people, people with mental health issues and women.

Our Advice and Compliance staff work with employers and voluntary and community groups to encourage employability initiatives for marginalized people who may find it hard to get into work, for example, disabled people, people with mental health issues or, in certain sectors, women.

For everything you need to know to start encouraging a more diverse and representative workforce. Call us on  028 90 500 600 or email, for one to one support from our team.

Support for small businesses

Dealing with staffing issues like recruitment, maternity, flexible working and redundancy are key challenges for small business, and we have put all our useful tools to help smaller businesses find information and support on the equality aspects of those issues online

Integrated Equality Plans – putting policy into practice

The Integrated Equality Plan provides employers with a practical and manageable framework for coordinating all aspects of equality work undertaken within their organisations.

Perfect your equality practice with best practice guides and codes of practice. All the guidance documents for employers are available online


Legal Case Examples


Lauren’s story

Lauren McGee took a case claiming sex discrimination with the Commission’s help when she tried and failed to arrange a management trainee position with a local company.



Examples of supported legal cases

Religious discrimination:


Harassment cases:


Sex discrimination:


Case Law



Working with you for everyone’s benefit

Are you proud of your company’s equality practices?

If you are, why not share your experiences with other organisations – we can all learn from each other. Visit Making Equality Work, our employers’ good practice section.

Women at work: getting a fair share?
We’d like to hear from individual women or groups of women who would be interested in giving their ideas and opinions on maximizing women’s economic participation.  Contact us to see how we can work together. Email Heather Wilson or telephone 028 90 500 687.

Partnerships, sponsorships and endorsements
Are you working in the field of equality or anti-discrimination?  Do you have an interesting piece of work to share?  We may be able to support you in the joint delivery of your work – contact us to see what the possibilities are.


Advice and Compliance
Our Advice and Compliance division is here to help with issues of equality and unlawful discrimination in employment.  Contact the team for one-to-one advice on 028 90 500 600, email us or see our employer training programme


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