Author: John Cove
Role in organisation: Director
Date of approval: March 2017
Date for renewal: June 2018
The aim of MK Dons Equality Policy is to promote our own equality objectives and in doing so, help to ensure that everyone is treated fairly and with respect. All MK Dons representatives should abide and adhere to this Policy and to the requirements of the Equality Act 2010.
The Football League is responsible for ting the standards, values and expectations of all Clubs in relation to equality, inclusion and diversity. Football is for everyone; it belongs to, and should be enjoyed by anyone who wants to participate in it, whether as a player, official, staff member or spectator.
The Equality Act 2010 (the ‘act’) legally protects people from discrimination in the workplace and in wider society. It replaced previous anti-discrimination laws with a single Act, making the law easier to understand and strengthening protection in some situations. It sets out the different ways in which it is unlawful to treat someone.
The protected characteristics are age, disability, gender / gender reassignment, marriage / civil partnership, pregnancy / maternity, race, religion or belief, sex, or sexual orientation.
Direct Discrimination - A person (A) discriminates against another (B) if, because of a protected characteristic, A treats B less favourably than A treats or would treat others.
Indirect Discrimination - A person (A) discriminates against another (B) if A applies to B a provision, criterion or practice which is discriminatory in relation to a relevant protected characteristic of B's.
Discrimination arising from disability - When a disabled person is treated unfavourably because of something connected with their disability and this unfavourable treatment cannot be justified, this is unlawful. This type of discrimination only relates to disability.
Harassment is defined as unwanted conduct relating to a protected characteristic that has the purpose or effect of violating a person’s dignity, or which creates an intimidating or hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for that person.
Victimisation - It is unlawful to treat a person less favourably because he or she has made allegations or brought proceedings under the anti-discrimination legislation, or because they have helped another person to do so. To do so would constitute victimisation.
Bullying is defined as a form of personal harassment involving the misuse of power, influence or position to persistently criticise, humiliate or undermine an individual.
Chapter 2 of the Act gives further definitions for specific protected characteristics and should be referred to for specific cases of expected discrimination.
3. Policy Statement
MK Dons' commitment is to promote inclusion and to confront and eliminate discrimination whether by reason of age, gender, gender reassignment, sexual orientation, marital status or civil partnership race, nationality, ethnicity (race), religion or belief, ability or disability, pregnancy and maternity and to encourage equal opportunities. These are known as ‘protected characteristics’ under the Equality Act 2010.
This Policy is fully supported by the Board of MK Dons and John Cove is responsible for the implementation of this policy.
4. Procedures and Guidelines
4.1 Complaints and compliance
MK Dons regards all of the forms of discriminatory behaviour, including (but not limited to) behaviour described in the Appendix as unacceptable, and is concerned to ensure that individuals feel able to raise any bona fide grievance or complaint related to such behaviour without fear of being penalised for doing so. Appropriate disciplinary action will be taken against any employee, member or volunteer, spectator or fan who is found, after a full investigation, to have violated the Equality Policy.
4.2 Positive Action and Training
MK Dons is committed to equality inclusion and anti-discrimination as part of The Football League’s Code of Practice. MK Dons will commit to a programme of raising awareness and educating, investigating concerns and applying relevant and proportionate sanctions, campaigning, widening diversity and representation and promoting diverse role models, which we believe are all key actions to promote inclusion and eradicate discrimination within football. This Equality Policy will be reviewed and updated, if required, on an annual basis.
4.3 Equality and Diversity in the workplace
For issues relating specifically to workplace based equality and diversity issues, please refer to the Equality and Diversity at Work policy.