Equality and Diversity: Coming of Age

This is the final consultation on the draft Employment Equality (Age) Regulations 2006, issued by the DTI in July 2005. In October 2006 the goverment will introduce legislation outlawing age discrimination in employment and vocational training. The legislation will give individuals new rights not to be discriminated against because of their age, and new responsibilities to all employers and providers of vocational training.

The draft regulations:
  • prohibit unjustified age discrimination in employment and vocational training
  • require employers who set their retirement age below the default age of 65 to justify or change it
  • introduce a new duty on employers to consider an employee’s request to continue working beyond retirement
  • require employers to inform employees in writing, and at least 6 months in advance, of their intended retirement date. This will allow people to plan for their retirement
  • remove the upper age limit for unfair dismissal and redundancy rights, giving older workers the same rights to claim unfair dismissal or receive a redundancy payment as younger workers, unless there is a genuine retirement
  • include provisions relating to service related benefits and occupational pensions.

The regulations also remove the age limits for Statutory Sick Pay, Statutory Maternity Pay, Statutory Adoption Pay and Statutory Paternity Pay.

The consultation ends on 17 October 2005.


The Equality Bill received royal assent on 16 February 2006. In October 2006 the Equality Act 2006 will legally establish the Commission for Equality and Human Rights (CEHR), expected in 2007. The Equality Act provides a body responsible for ensuring age equality, following the introduction of the Employment Equality (Age) Regulations in spring 2006, and gives new focus and attention to observing human rights.


home >> Election 2005  Queries to: webmaster@cpa.org.uk