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Gender Identity


The Sex Discrimination Act makes it unlawful to discriminate against a person because of their gender identity. There are some limited exemptions.

Gender identity discrimination happens when a person is treated less favourably than another person in a similar situation because of that person’s gender-related identity, appearance, mannerisms or other gender-related characteristics of the person. Discrimination can also happen when a policy applies to everyone but disadvantages a person because of their gender identity and the policy is not reasonable.

Example: An organisation’s human resources policy does not permit changes to an employee’s records. The policy may require a transgender woman to continually disclose information about her gender identity in order to explain discrepancies in personal details.

Employers can also be liable for the discriminatory acts of their employees. This is called vicarious liability.