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Want to stay on the right side of the law? We support businesses and public authorities and help them to promote good practice.

Monitoring and review

What you need to know

How we can help



Public Authorities - Monitoring and Review

There are 6 key duties which by law employers have to do.

They are:

1. Specification and Registration >

The specification of public authorities is a matter for The Executive Office in exercise of the powers conferred by Articles 50 and 51 of the Fair Employment and Treatment (Northern Ireland) Order 1998.  See our list of designated public authorities (pdf). Specified public authorities are automatically registered with the Commission.

2. Monitor the community background of employees >

All registered employers should monitor the composition of their workforce in terms of community background and sex. We recommend using an equal opportunities monitoring form questionnaire.

3. Submit an annual monitoring return >

Registered employers are required to submit an annual monitoring return to us. A failure to submit a return is a criminal offence, as is failure to submit one within the prescribed period.

4. Complete an Article 55 review >

All registered employers should conduct reviews of the composition of their workforces and of their employment practices. These ‘Article 55’ reviews must be conducted at least once every three years.

5. Have regard to the Fair Employment Code of Practice >

This sets out recommendations and good practice for employers regarding their employment duties and responsibilities in Northern Ireland.

6. Take affirmative action >

Take affirmative action, where it is reasonable and appropriate to do so, and consider setting goals and timetables. 

How we can help

We believe that helping you promote and encourage good equal opportunities practice is as important as enforcing the equality law. Every year, the Commission helps hundreds of businesses and organisations comply with equality laws.

We recognise that employers' needs differ across sectors and businesses – so we tailor our services to meet employers’ varying needs.


We provide high quality training seminars and information sessions to employers on a wide range of equality issues.

These events provide advice and guidance on employers’ duties under current equality laws and on introducing best practice. We recommend that employers carefully consider their needs and choose the seminars and sessions which are of most benefit to them.


    Training sessions include:

   •  Introduction to understanding equality
   •  Equality training for line managers
   •  Recruiting fairly
   •  Harassment at work
   •  Pregnancy, maternity and flexible working
   •  Mental ill-health at work
   •  Promoting disability in the workplace 
   •  Reasonable steps defence
   •  How to complete an Article 55 Review
   •  Monitoring form workshops







We are flexible in terms of themes covered and can tailor courses to suit employers’ business needs. Further details are available on our employer training page or contact us Tel: 028 90 500 600, email


In-house training

On occasion, the Commission can provide in-house training for organisations.  Where we agree to such a request, we will normally deliver one session to key staff within the organisation and assist them to disseminate the training internally. For in-house training requests, contact Frances Nugent, email  Tel: 028 90 500600.

Speakers for your event

If you are organising an equality related event, our staff can share their expertise to highlight relevant issues in equality law that relate to your business priorities. For further information, contact Paul Oakes  Tel: 028 90 500600.

Employer news ezine

To receive updates on our training seminars, events and employer equality networks sign up to receive our Public Authorities Newsletter using the subscribe button at the bottom of the page.


This is a selection of publications that are most relevant to monitoring and review.

Other useful publications:
  Please contact our Advice and Compliance team if you need further advice. If you are looking for a particular publication, you can search our publications database

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