Unit 1: Exploring Equality and Diversity
Session 5: Having an equal opportunity
Being treated unfairly
Britain is a very diverse country with many characteristics and qualities. Sometimes, people are stereotyped because of just one or two characteristics and become the victims of prejudice and discrimination. There are many aspects of life where discrimination may occur and people will be treated unfairly.
The danger is that people who have prejudices based upon characteristics like those listed below will seek to discriminate against certain groups of people:
• Gender reassignment
• Marriage and civil partnership
• Pregnancy and maternity
• Religion or belief (including lack of belief)
• Sexual orientation.
If these prejudices cause people to be treated unfairly then their quality of life will be poorer. Their opportunities will not be on an equal footing with many other members of the community. The notion of equal opportunities is important in many key aspects of living.
To have equal opportunities means having equal access to those things that influence your quality of life and life prospects. By its very nature, discrimination may prevent people having equal opportunities.
Some examples of equal opportunities include:
If a person is deprived of the opportunity to learn they will be less able to pursue certain careers, earn money and follow certain interests. In Britain, it was once impossible for women to receive a University education. Likewise, people from poorer families had limited or no access to education. In many countries today, women or certain religious / ethnic groups are still denied a formal education.
The principle of education being universally available for all people is one that furthers the cause of equal opportunities and challenges...