There is no place for discrimination at Ayrshire College.   If you feel you are being discriminated against because of say your age, disability or sexuality, then, tell us so that we can help you.  

Direct discrimination versus indirect discrimination:

Direct discrimination means treating someone less favourably than someone else on the basis of the following protected characteristics: 
  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership (in employment)
  • pregnancy and maternity 
  • race
  • religion or belief (including no belief)
  • sex
  • sexual orientation
For someone to show that they have been directly discriminated against, they must compare what has happened to them to the treatment a person without their protected characteristic is receiving or would receive. 

A gay student cannot claim that being excluded for fighting is direct discrimination on grounds of sexual orientation unless they can show that a heterosexual or bisexual student for example would not be excluded for fighting. 

You do not need to find an actual person to compare their treatment with, but you can rely on a hypothetical person if it can be shown there is evidence that such a person would be treated differently. 

There are exceptions.  For example, it is reasonable to treat a student or member of staff more favourably if they have a disability as adjustments may be required to support them. 

Direct discrimination can also take place based on association with someone with a protected characteristic or it can be based on perception.  In this case, you do not need to have a particular protected characteristic to experience direct discrimination.   For example, it can occur if someone is treated less favourably because they have a partner who has a disability or because a person is mistakenly thought to be gay.

Indirect discrimination meanwhile occurs when you apply a provision, criteria or practice in the same way for everyone but this has the effect of putting people sharing a protected characteristic at a particular disadvantage. It doesn’t matter that you did not intend to disadvantage that group.  What does matter is whether your action does or would disadvantage that group in some way. 

Indirect discrimination will occur if the following conditions are met:
  • the provision, criterion or practice is applied or would be applied equally to all people, including a particular person or group with a protected characteristic; 
  • the provision, criterion or practice puts or would put people sharing a protected characteristic at a particular disadvantage compared to relevant people who do not share that characteristic; and 
  • the provision, criterion or practice puts or would put the particular person or group at that disadvantage, and it cannot be shown that the provision, criteria or practice are justified as a ‘proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim’

There are two ways you can tell us what happened