Using our Regulatory Powers

One of the Commission's roles as a regulator is to use our enforcement powers. 

The legal team in Scotland look at cases that help to prevent equality and human rights abuses, that proactively tackle discrimination, and those which allow us to respond to new and emerging issues. 

Enforcement work has included:

  • Taking pre-enforcement action against several local authorities who were using a screening question about possession of a drivers licence in their online application forms for social work jobs. The screening question was preventing disabled people who could not hold a driving licence because of their impairment or condition from applying and being considered for the job.  The authorities removed the question, except when relating to vacancies where driving was intrinsic to the job.
  • Using our enforcement powers to tackle two employers who were acting in breach of section 60 of the Equality Act 2010 by asking questions about disability and health during the employment application process. Both employers have now stopped issuing health questionnaires before they have offered work. We have now dealt with seven cases involving potential breaches of section 60.
  • Following up concerns raised by solicitors at an EHRC training event about a practice of unlawful short term mental health detentions which potentially breached patients’ human rights.  We examined the issue with stakeholders and then worked with the Mental Welfare Commission who, as a result of our intervention, took steps which included issuing advice notes to NHS and social work services and making recommendations to the Mental Health Tribunal. 

 Read more about the Commission's enforcement work.

Last updated: 12 May 2016