To promote equal treatment for all employees or potential employees irrespective of race, creed, colour, sexual orientation, nationality, ethnic origins, religion, gender, gender reassignment, marital status, trade union membership or unless justifiable, disability; and that this is managed in such a way that the company complies with and goes beyond the Equal Opportunities legislation and Codes of Practice.
Issues regarding the employment of disabled persons and harassment are also referred to in other policies specifically designed to cover these issues.
All employees, and prospective employees of GB Railfreight. This policy has particular relevance to all those concerned with recruitment, training and promotion procedures and/or decision making.
3. POLICY STATEMENT
GB Railfreight is committed to equality of opportunity in all its employment practices, policies and procedures. To this end, within the framework of the law, we are committed wherever practicable to achieving and maintaining a workforce which broadly reflects the local catchments area within which we operate. No employee or potential employee will therefore receive less favourable treatment due to their race, creed, colour, sexual orientation, nationality, ethnic origins, religion, gender, gender reassignment, marital status, trade union membership or, unless justifiable, disability.
4. JOB DESIGN
The design of jobs, working hours and related practices can discriminate directly or indirectly against certain groups of applicants. As vacancies arise or departments are restructured the requirements of individual jobs will be reviewed and redesigned where necessary in order to ensure the broadest possible catchments of essential recruits of suitable calibre. Where appropriate, new work patterns and flexible working will be considered and introduced.
All vacancies will normally be advertised within the company in order to provide an equal opportunity for all interested persons to apply. All external recruitment will be conducted according to the terms of the Recruitment Policy. Applications will be encouraged from all suitably qualified individuals and, where appropriate, particular emphasis will be placed upon encouraging applications from those who may be currently under represented in the workforce.
An exception to the above applies when special arrangements are made for the redeployment of personnel who would otherwise be at risk of redundancy. All advertisements, whether internal or external must be approved by the Operations Director following discussion with the recruiting manager for the vacancy.
6. RECRUITMENT, TRANSFERS AND PROMOTIONS
Applications for employment should provide sufficient detail for an equitable and instructive interview and for the screening and selection of applicants. Personal details such as marital status, number of children, gender, race or creed are not necessary for a recruitment decision to be made. Additional details of this nature will be needed for recording and monitoring purposes and as such will be kept by the Personnel department.
The company shall not insist upon higher education or professional qualifications other than those which are strictly necessary for the job. In assessing qualifications it will not be assumed that overseas diplomas or
Degrees are of a lower standard than their UK equivalents. Wherever possible experience may count as an equivalent to professional qualifications the requirements for which will then be waived wherever possible.
All appointments will be made solely on merit, regardless of gender, gender reassignment marital status, religion, nationality, ethnic or racial origin, sexual orientation, trade union membership or, unless justifiable, disability.
7. TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT
The company’s training programmes will be designed to support the aims of this policy. Stereotyping, prejudice or any other form of discrimination will be eliminated from all internal courses. Every effort will be made to select external courses which also meet these requirements.
The criteria for selecting employees for training opportunities must be non-discriminatory. These will be based upon the employee’s merits and abilities, business needs and the availability of appropriate work related courses. Whenever practicable training will be arranged so that all categories of employees may attend e.g. part-timer.
There is an Appraisal system which applies to all employees and there will be positive encouragement to discuss suitable development and training opportunities.
8. REDUNDANCY & REDEPLOYMENT
With reference to the appropriate policies the selection for redundancy and/or redeployment must be conducted in a manner which avoids any direct or indirect discrimination. Specific statutory protection applies to persons who are either pregnant, on maternity leave or are nursing mothers.
9. OTHER POLICIES
All company policies, remuneration opportunities, shift working, overtime opportunities, appraisal scheme, disciplinary procedure and benefits are designed to promote equal potential and protection for all employees.
The details of this policy will be communicated to all current employees and new starters. All job applicants may also receive details of the policy upon request. Where necessary any communication initiative will take account of literacy difficulties, communication disabilities and be aware if the recipient’s first language is not English.
11. ADHERENCE TO POLICY
It is the responsibility of managers/supervisors to:
· ensure that the minimum standards established within this policy are adhered to within their area of responsibility;
· consider the results of any monitoring exercises and develop an Equal Opportunities Action Plan wherever appropriate which prioritises where change is necessary and/or where training must take place;
· Review the effectiveness of the policy and all associated Action Plans.
All employees, at every level, must:
· co-operate with any measures introduced to ensure equal opportunity;
· report any suspected discriminatory acts or practices;
· not induce or attempt to induce others to practice unlawful discrimination;
· not victimise anyone as a result of them having reported or provided evidence of discrimination;
· not harass, abuse or intimidate others on account of their race, gender etc.;
· Not canvass job applicants in an attempt to discourage them from applying or taking up a post.
Any breach of the Equal Opportunities Policy will be dealt with through the disciplinary procedure. Serious offences, such as harassment, will be dealt with as gross misconduct.
Any employee who has a concern regarding the application of this policy should normally make use of the company’s grievance procedure. (Where there is a concern regarding harassment the particular procedure contained within that policy should be followed).
Any prospective employee may request a copy of this policy and submit any grievance, which must be in writing, to the Personnel Department within 14 days of any alleged incident. An investigation will then be conducted and the individual will receive a written report as to the outcome.
All those persons referred to within the scope of this policy are required to adhere to its terms and conditions. They must understand that this policy is also incorporated into their contract of employment.
Individual managers are responsible for ensuring that this policy is applied within their own area. Any queries on the application or interpretation of this policy must be discussed with the Personnel department prior to any action being taken.
The Personnel department has the responsibility for ensuring the maintenance, regular review and updating of this policy. Revisions, amendments or alterations to the policy can only be implemented following consideration and approval by the Operations Director.