Equal Status Act, 2000 (Ireland) Essay Sample
The following essay sample is written for highlighting upon the discriminational grounds faced by people and their equality in status discussed under The Equal Status Act 2000.
It prohibits discrimination in the provision of goods and services, accommodation and education. There are nine grounds of the discrimination of a person covering gender, marital status, family status, age disability, sexual orientation, race, religion and membership of Traveller community. Discriminating people on the grounds arises only when there is a rich cultural diversity and one needs to stay with another person of a diverse culture maintaining the communal harmony.
The Equal Status Act 2000 is an Act to promote equality and prohibition of different types of discrimination, sexual and general harrassment and related to behaviour in connection with the provision of services, property and other opportunities to which the public generally or a section of the public access, to provide for investigating and remedying certain discrimination and other unlawful activities, to provide for the administration by the Equality Authority of various matters pertaining to this Act, to anend Employment Equality Act 1988.
Aims of Equal Status Act, 2000 (Ireland)
The various aims of Equal Status Act 2000 are following :-
- It aims to promote equality of status amongst the general public who are diverse in their culture and discriminated on the basis of creed, caste, faith, religion etc.
- This Act aims to ban on certain kinds of discrimination across the nine grounds .
- It aims to ban sexual harassment and victimization of person.
- Act provides reasonable accommodation of people with disability.
- This also allows a broad range of positive action measures.
Discrimination under Equal Status Act, 2000 (Ireland)
Discrimination under Equal Status Act 2000 means that you receive less favorable treatment from other people because of who you are. However, not all forms of discrimination are covered under this Act. Different types of Acts provides different grounds of discrimination.
Equal Status Act 2000 prohibits discrimination subject to some exemptions, in access to use of goods and services, including indirect discrimination and discrimination by association, sexual harassment and victimization. This Act also provides positive action to promote equality for the section of disadvantaged people or to cater to their special needs.
Discriminatory advertising is also prohibited from publication, display or cause to be published or displayed. Advertisement which indicates an introduction to discharge, harass, sexually harass or might reasonably be understood as individual intention.
The Nine Grounds of discrimination under this Act
- The Gender Ground
Any person is entitled to equal treatment irrespective of any gender that he or she belongs to. Such a person could be a man, woman or transgender.
- Civil Status Ground
Person is entitled to all equal treatment whether you are single, married, separated, divorced or widowed, in a civil partnership or previously in one.
- Family Status Ground
One is entitled to equal treatment if is pregnant or the parent or the person, responsible for a child under 18 years of age. This ground also protects those who are the main carers or parent of a person with a disability who is 18 years or over where their disability requires care on an ongoing basis.
- Sexual Orientation Ground
Entitled to equal protection of rights and providing treatment irrespective of a person’s sexual orientation or behavior. (gay, lesbian or bisexual).
- Religion Ground
Person is entitled to equal treatment and his rights are protected irrespective of his religious beliefs, faith or customs that are being followed by him.
- Age Ground
Equal protection of his rights and treatment of any age group so long as you arch over 18 years.
- Race Ground
Equal treatment of person irrespective of his race, skin color, nationality or ethnic group that he belongs to etc..
- The Traveler Community Ground
Equal treatment irrespective of belonging to any traveler community.
- Disability Ground
There are many forms of disabilities such as physical (unable to walk or see), intellectual disability (dyslexia).
Certain mental health issues are also in the form of disability. It could also mean that you suffer from a particular medical condition, which is potentially chronic, long term, and gets worse over time.
Who all are protected from discrimination?
- The one who buys or sells goods that are available to the public or a section of public.
- One who buys services and sells them to the public.
- Person who provides or uses accommodation (landlord, tenant, hotels).
- Person attending or managing pre school, college or other educational establishment.
The Reasonable Accommodation for disabled person
In addition The Equal Status Act 2000 requires those selling goods or providing services to provide reasonable accommodation or special treatment or facilities. Where without these it would be impossible or unduly difficult for a person with disabilities to avail of the goods and services, unless this would cost more than a normal cost.
The services provided by the State (Health Service Executive), local authorities and so on are covered but there are some exemptions.
The main exemption is that anything required to be done by another Irish law or EU law cannot be regarded as discrimination under the Equal Status Act.
Reasonable accommodation means providing specific treatment or facilities to make sure that people with disability can avail of the particular goods, services, housing. The individual organization must do all the reasonable to meet the needs of a person with a disability.
Harassment and Sexual Harassment
The Equal Status Act 2000 state that sexual harassment and harassment in the provision of goods and services, the accommodation and the educational institutions are against the law.
Harassment is a form of discrimination that includes any form of unwanted conduct related to any nine grounds of discrimination.
Sexual harassment is a verbal, non verbal or physical conduct which is unwanted and is of sexual nature.
In both the cases, it is the conduct that damages the person at the receiving end in terms of dignity and and self esteem. It could be in spoken words, gestures, emails, texts, messages etc.
If one is harassed in a place while accessing services, the person in charge of that place could be held responsible for the harassment. They’re responsible for ensuring that anyone who has a right to be on their premises is not harassed and must take steps to prevent it from happening.
Victimization is where a person is badly treated or penalized by others because they’ve made a complaint about discrimination under Equal status act and have been involved in some way in a complaint. Victimization is against the law under the Equal Status Act.
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