• 01616 966 229
  • Request a callback
Stephensons Solicitors LLP Banner Image

News and Events

Brexit: has discrimination increased in the UK since the referendum?

View profile for Maria Chadwick
  • Posted
  • Author
No-deal Brexit: FCA regulated firms should ensure that they are prepared for all outcomes

In May 2018, a UN special rapporteur on racism concluded that following Brexit, ‘extreme views’ in relation to racial discrimination and intolerance have increased, in the UK.

Professor Tendayi Achiume was appointed the UN’s special rapporteur on racism in September 2017. After spending time in the UK investigating racial equality (including the potential impact that Brexit has had), she concluded that there has been a growth in discrimination and intolerance of ethnic minorities that have been specifically related to the Brexit referendum.

Professor Achiume stated: The environment leading up to the referendum, the environment during the referendum, and the environment after the referendum has made racial and ethnic minorities more vulnerable to racial discrimination and intolerance.” However, Professor Achiume did praise the UK government for the steps that it has taken thus far, to tackle racial discrimination and equality.

There are different ways in which a person can be discriminated against on the grounds of their race and/or religion and it is not simply a case of being subjected to hurtful comments; although this is one obvious form of discrimination.

Direct discrimination

A person will have been directly discriminated against if they can show that they have been treated less favourably than others have been or would have been by an employer/organisation or service provider because of their race and/or religion.

Indirect discrimination:

Indirect discrimination can occur when an employer/organisation or service provider applies a provision, criterion or practice (PCP) that puts a person at a disadvantage when compared to others because of their race and/or religion.


A person will have been subjected to harassment if they can demonstrate that an employer (or an employee), service provider or organisation have engaged in unwanted conduct related to their race and/or religion and that the conduct had the purpose or effect of violating their dignity or created an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment.

If you feel that you have been the victim of race and/or religious discrimination, and you would like to speak to a member of our specialist team, call us on 01616 966 229 or complete an online enquiry form without delay.