We have seen a significant increase in enquiries about the menopause in recent months. At this stage, from a strict legal perspective, the menopause is not, in itself, protected under the Equality Act. However, it can be captured by protection from age, sex...
If you provide services in the hospitality industry, you must consider how certain disabilities may impact the accessibility of your services for individuals and what measures can be taken by way of reasonable adjustments to your services/premises to alleviate any adverse impact.
The duty to make reasonable adjustments is ‘anticipatory’, which means that your business must think in advance about what is reasonably practicable, rather than to avoid the issue and be forced to act reactively.
If a customer can prove that you haven’t made reasonable adjustments and this prevents/causes them difficulty in accessing your services, they could have grounds to issue a discrimination claim against you. Reasonable adjustments can include things such as modifying the premises or providing a portable ramp and ensuring that the toilet facilities are accessible for those with mobility issues, increasing the lighting in the restaurant or above a particular table to accommodate customers who are partially sighted, or keeping the volume of background music to a minimum to accommodate customers who experience sensory difficulties.
One of the most important things you can do is provide your staff with disability awareness and inclusion training and educate them on how to be more inclusive of people with disabilities and the barriers that people living with disabilities may face. This will ultimately improve the customer service experience and allow your customers who have disabilities to feel more comfortable and welcome in their engagement with your services.
If your business receives complaints or claims of discrimination, our team can help you. For a no obligation discussion with our specialist discrimination defence solicitors, call us on 01616 966 229.