If you were subject to unlawful treatment on or after 1 October 2010, the Equality Act applies.For example, if you experienced sex discrimination on 30 September 2010, which continued until 2 October 2010, the Equality Act will apply, not the Sex Discrimination Act.Before the Act came into force there were several pieces of legislation to cover discrimination, including: If you wish to complain about possible unlawful treatment there are 2 separate processes, depending on when it happened.If you were subjected to unlawful treatment (eg discrimination, harassment or victimisation) before 1 October 2010, the Equality Act won’t apply.It does not outlaw the many instances of different treatment that are justifiable or beneficial.
Find out more about how to complain about unlawful treatment in the Discrimination: your rights guide.
To allow people and organisations enough time to prepare for the new laws, the provisions of the Act were brought in at different times (known as commencement dates).
Instead, you’ll be covered by the legislation that was in force at the time.
For example, if you experienced race discrimination on 30 September 2010 and want to make a complaint or bring legal proceedings, the Race Relations Act 1976 will apply, not the Equality Act. They will go ahead according to the legislation under which they were brought, even if they may have continued after 1 October 2010.
It sets out the different ways in which it’s unlawful to treat someone.
Find out more about who is protected from discrimination, the types of discrimination under the law and what action you can take if you feel you’ve been unfairly discriminated against.