Editor's message: The concept of harassment under the Equality Act 2010 is expansive. Where one person engages in unwanted conduct related to the protected characteristic of sexual orientation, which has the purpose or effect of violating another person's dignity, or creating an intimidating, hostile, degrading, humiliating or offensive environment for him or her, this constitutes harassment.
Although the harassment must be related to sexual orientation, remember that it does not have to relate to the person's actual sexual orientation; it can relate to his or her perceived sexual orientation, even if that perception is wrong. For example, if a heterosexual woman is harassed because she is perceived to be gay, it is enough that she has been harassed because of assumptions made about her sexual orientation even if they are mistaken.
Ashok Kanani, employment law editor
An unbaked cake expected to feature Sesame Street characters Bert and Ernie seems an unlikely source of guidance for HR on discrimination. But Lee v Ashers Baking Co Ltd and others provides an important reminder for employers of the principles when an employer's beliefs clash with a customer's needs.
In this case about discrimination in the provision of goods and services, the Northern Ireland Court of Appeal has held that a Christian bakery committed direct sexual orientation discrimination when it refused to fulfil an order for a cake featuring a message in support of same-sex marriage.
Updated to include information on Kratzer v R+V Allgemeine Versicherung, in which the ECJ held that a person who applies for a job with the sole purpose of making an application for compensation for discrimination is not covered by EU discrimination law.
A table listing the sexual orientation discrimination awards made by employment tribunals in 2015/16.
The "Brexit" referendum on whether or not the UK should withdraw from the European Union takes place on 23 June 2016. Stephen Simpson rounds up 12 key European cases that have had a major impact on UK employment law.
Cases on appeal provides news on key case law developments that are expected.
A table listing the sexual orientation discrimination awards made by employment tribunals in 2014/15.
In this week's podcast, we discuss sexual orientation discrimination.
A table listing the sexual orientation discrimination awards made by employment tribunals in 2013/14.
A table listing the sexual orientation discrimination awards made by employment tribunals in 2012/13.
HR and legal information and guidance relating to sexual orientation discrimination.