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As we are a Church can I decide the type of person I want to advertise for?

Your advert should relate directly to the skills and experience needed to do the job rather than focusing on the type of person you require. You should take particular care with the wording of the advert to ensure that you are not being discriminatory – for example – against someone’s age, gender, sexual orientation etc. You cannot ask for ‘a young female’ in your advert as this would discriminate against anyone who is not young and not female. When putting an advert together you should remember to consider the following points:

  • draw on the job description and person specification to ensure that you give a realistic picture of the job and are precise about your requirements;
  • think carefully about the language and avoid using phrases that, for example, imply age restrictions such as "young graduates" or "mature person". You also should think very carefully about more subtle use of language when advertising roles, e.g. “Energetic” and “Vivacious” could also be problematic as they imply you are hoping to attract younger applicants;
  • give clear instructions about obtaining the application form and job information and who to contact; and
  • make sure you include a closing date.

See www.acas.co.uk for more information.

What does the Equality Act 2010 cover?

The Equality Act came into force on October 1st 2010. This act brings together existing legislation on discrimination and equality and introduces new provisions, which address outstanding discrimination issues and support wider work to promote equality. The Act covers all groups already covered by existing anti-discrimination law.

Amongst other features, this act extends ‘positive action’ for employers when recruiting. This will mean that when choosing between two equally qualified candidates, employers will be able to select the candidate who is currently under represented in their workforce.

In addition, the act also limits the circumstances where by you can ask health-related questions before you have offered an individual a job.

Default Retirement Age

Employers can no longer specify a Default Retirement Age, therefore they will no longer follow the associated retirement procedures.