The Race Relations (Northern Ireland) Order 1997

Codes of practiceN.I.

45.  (1)  The Commission may issue codes of practice containing such practical guidance as the Commission thinks fit for all or any of the following purposes, namely—

(a)the elimination of discrimination[F1 and harassment] in the field of employment;

(b)the promotion of equality of opportunity in the field of employment between persons of different racial groups;

(c)the elimination of discrimination[F1 and harassment] in the field of housing;

(d)the promotion of equality of opportunity in the field of housing between persons of different racial groups.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (1), a code of practice issued under this Article may include such practical guidance as the Commission thinks fit as to what steps it is reasonably practicable for employers to take for the purpose of preventing their employees from doing in the course of their employment acts made unlawful by this Order.

(3) When the Commission proposes to issue a code of practice, it shall prepare and publish a draft of that code, shall consider any representations made to it about the draft and may modify the draft accordingly.

(4) In the course of preparing any draft code of practice relating to the field of employment for eventual publication under paragraph (3), the Commission shall consult with—

(a)such organisations or associations of organisations representative of employers or of workers; and

(b)such other organisations or bodies,

as appear to the Commission to be appropriate.

(5) In the course of preparing any draft code of practice relating to the field of housing for eventual publication under paragraph (3), the Commission shall consult with such organisations or bodies as appear to the Commission to be appropriate having regard to the content of the proposed code.

(6) If the Commission determines to proceed with the draft, it shall transmit the draft to the Department which shall—

(a)if it approves of the draft, lay it before the Assembly; and

(b)if it does not approve of the draft, publish details of its reasons for withholding approval.

(7) If, within the statutory period beginning with the day on which a copy of the draft is laid before the Assembly, the Assembly so resolves, no further proceedings shall be taken on the draft, but without prejudice to the laying before the Assembly of a new draft.

(8) If no such resolution is passed as is referred to in paragraph (7), the Commission shall issue the code in the form of the draft and the code shall come into effect on such day as the Department may by order appoint.

(9) The Commission may from time to time revise the whole or any part of a code of practice issued under this Article and issue that revised code, and paragraphs (3) to (8) shall apply (with appropriate modifications) to such a revised code as they apply to the first issue of a code.

(10) A failure on the part of any person to observe any provision of a code of practice shall not of itself render him liable to any proceedings, but in any proceedings under this Order before an industrial tribunal or a county court—

(a)any code of practice issued under this Article shall be admissible in evidence; and

(b)any provision of the code which appears to the tribunal or court to be relevant to any question arising in the proceedings shall be taken into account in determining that question.

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F1SR 2003/341