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(1)The Secretary of State shall issue a code of practice specifying what an employer should or should not do in order to ensure that, while avoiding liability to a penalty under section 15 and while avoiding the commission of an offence under section 21, he also avoids contravening—
(a)the Race Relations Act 1976 (c. 74), or
(b)the Race Relations (Northern Ireland) Order 1997 (S.I. 869 (N.I. 6)).
(2)Before issuing the code the Secretary of State shall—
(i)the Commission for Equality and Human Rights,
(ii)the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland,
(iii)such bodies representing employers as he thinks appropriate, and
(iv)such bodies representing workers as he thinks appropriate,
(b)publish a draft code (after that consultation),
(c)consider any representations made about the published draft, and
(d)lay a draft code before Parliament (after considering representations under paragraph (c) and with or without modifications to reflect the representations).
(3)The code shall come into force in accordance with provision made by order of the Secretary of State; and an order—
(a)may include transitional provision,
(b)shall be made by statutory instrument, and
(c)shall be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.
(4)A breach of the code—
(a)shall not make a person liable to civil or criminal proceedings, but
(b)may be taken into account by a court or tribunal.
(5)The Secretary of State shall from time to time review the code and may revise and re-issue it following a review; and a reference in this section to the code includes a reference to the code as revised.
(6)Until the dissolution of the Commission for Racial Equality, the reference in subsection (2)(a)(i) to the Commission for Equality and Human Rights shall be treated as a reference to the Commission for Racial Equality.
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Text created by the government department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Public Acts except Appropriation, Consolidated Fund, Finance and Consolidation Acts.
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