A Bill before Parliament would make it easier for workers to claim for harassment by customers or clients under the Equality Act.
The Worker Protection (Amendment of Equality Act 2010) Bill (parliament.uk) is a private member’s bill but supported by the government.
Harassment by managers and fellow members of staff is already covered by the EqA. However the Bill would add a specific provision on harassment by third parties such as customers, clients, or suppliers.
Clause 1 of the Bill (if passed in its current form) would amend s.40 EqA to say that harassment by an employer includes where a “third party” – ie someone other than the employer or one of its employees – harasses the worker in the course of the worker’s employment, and the employer failed to take all reasonable steps to prevent the third party from doing so.
The Bill also has important provisions on sexual harassment, which are outside the scope of this website.
The current position on third-party harassment is discussed at Harassment of employees>Harassment by third parties, such as customers or suppliers.
- The Worker Protection (Amendment of Equality Act 2010) Bill (parliament.uk) – the Bill, including Explanatory Notes and progress in Parliament
- New duties to be imposed on UK employers to prevent sexual harassment (pinsentmasons.com), 3 Nov 2022.