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Home >> Members >> Equinet Members >> United Kingdom >> Great Britain - Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)

Great Britain - Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC)

UNITED KINGDOM: Equality and Human Rights Commission

Main Informations


The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is an independent statutory body established in 2007. It has a statutory remit to promote and monitor human rights; and to protect, enforce and promote equality across the nine "protected" grounds – age, disability, gender, race, religion and belief, pregnancy and maternity, marriage and civil partnership, sexual orientation and gender reassignment.

Brief history

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is an independent statutory body established under the Equality Act 2006. It was launched on 1 October 2007, following the merger of the former Equal Opportunities Commission, Commission for Racial Equality, and the Disability Rights Commission. The EHRC is the independent regulator for equality, human rights and good relations in Britain. Our sponsor government department is the Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS).

Mandate type
  • Predominantly promotion-type and legal support body
Litigation powers
  • Representing in front of courts
  • Bringing proceedings in own name
  • Intervening before the court
  • Formally deciding on complaints (e.g. decision or recommendation addressed to the parties) legally binding
  • Formally deciding on complaints (e.g. decision or recommendation addressed to the parties) Not legally binding
Activities aimed at supporting vulnerable groups (e.g. through trainings)noyesyesyesyesyesnonono
Activities aimed at supporting duty bearers such as employers and service providers (e.g. through trainings, guidance material, practical support, etc.)noyesyesyesyesyesnonono
Communication activities (e.g. awareness raising campaigns)noyesyesyesyesyesnonono
Recommendations on discrimination issuesnoyesyesyesyesyesnonono
Publications and reportsnoyesyesyesyesyesnonono
Research projects (including surveys)noyesyesyesyesyesnonono
Our institution has a mandate to deal with:
  • Violence against women
  • UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD)
  • Hate crime
Other statistics
Number of inquiries handled per year (all contact even if not resulting in a formal complaint)no datano datano datano datano datano datano datano datano data
Number of cases handled per year (case files opened and processed according to your procedures)381714151110no datano datano data
Number of media appearances per year (major newspapers/magazines/websites/blogs, TV + radio channels) - does not include social mediano datano datano datano datano datano datano datano datano data
  • Collegiate headed equality body (led by a distinct board/commission)
Management details

Strategic direction is given by the Board of Commissioners led by the Chair. The Board is responsible for approving the strategic plan, monitoring performance against the plan and ensuring appropriate systems of governance, accountability and control. The

Additional details

The EHRC has a dual role as NEB (National Equality Body) and NHRI (National Human Rights Institution).

The EHRC works in conjunction with the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland, the Scottish Human Rights Commission and the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (NIHRC).

Procedure for nomination and appointment of management and board

Commissioners are recruited by open competition for a time limited period.

Senior staff members are recruited by open competition.

Number of staff dealing with equality issues
no data376218201205201no datano datano data
Grounds and fields of discrimination covered by the equality body
Grounds / FieldsEmploymentEducationHousingSocial Protection & HealthcareGoods & ServicesOther
Gender Identityyesyesnonoyes
Race and Ethnic Originyesyesnonoyes
Sexual Orientationyesyesnonoyes
Religion & Beliefyesyesnonoyes
Mandate covers:
  • Public sector
  • Private sector
Operating budget in euros
562130005005700028790000217990002248300023347000no datano datano data
Operating budget in euros for the parts of the organisation dealing with equality issues (all types of functions).
no datano datano datano datano datano datano datano datano data
We are accountable to:
  • National Ministry

Related News

The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has published the final products from its three-year programme of work on religion or belief. These consist of three documents: Religion or belief – is the law working?, an evaluation of the effectiveness of the religion or belief legal framework; online guidance for employers on key religion or belief topics; and online training modules on religion or belief for line managers (developed with ACAS) and union managers (developed with the TUC).


Equinet Calendar 2017

January 13th 2017

Equinet celebrates its 10th birthday this year! As a celebratory gesture, we have put together a 2017 calendar highlighting the work of some of our members across Europe.


In a recent judgement from the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom, the court found that bus companies must end discriminatory ‘first come, first served’ policies, and do more to give priority to wheelchair users. Bus companies should have clear policies in place, and give training to drivers to remove the barriers wheelchair users face when using buses.


Being disabled in Britain is a review into disability inequality in Great Britain. It builds on the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s statutory five-yearly report on equality and human rights progress in England, Scotland and Wales, Is Britain Fairer?.

The report includes chapters on six areas of life, including education, work, health, justice and participation in politics, looking at where there has been progress and where there are still serious issues to be tackled. It also looks at the experiences of those with different impairments and how these impact on people’s life chances.


The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has worked with spoken word artist George the Poet to create a powerful film looking at the role of hate crime in our society and the need for all of us to come together to challenge intolerance and report incidents of hate.


The Equality and Human Rights Commission launched a 5 point plan on how Britain can keep and strengthen its status as a world leader on equality and human rights after they leave the European Union. The plan covers: (1) protecting parliamentary sovereignty over the UK’s equality and human rights legal framework (2) keeping the UK’s equality and human rights legal framework as they leave the European Union (3) making sure the UK is a global leader on equality and human rights (4) protecting the UK’s equality and human rights infrastructure (5) promoting the UK as an open and fair place to live and do business.


As health and social care budgets are slashed, disabled people’s right to independent living is being continually eroded, the UK’s equality and human rights bodies have said.
The warning comes ahead of a UN examination of the UK’s track record on disabled people’s rights on 23-24 August, which will be attended by Equinet members ECNI and the EHRC, amongst others.


The Equality and Human Rights Commission have published a strategy setting out what needs to change and who needs to take action to reduce gender, ethnicity and disability pay gaps.


The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) has published “Sexual harassment and the law: Guidance for employers.” Experiencing sexual harassment is one of the most difficult situations a person can face in the workplace. No workplace is immune to sexual harassment and a lack of reported cases does not necessarily mean that they have not occurred. Recent high-profile testimonies and sharing of experiences on social media have highlighted sexual harassment in a range of workplaces, and the real barriers that many experience in reporting it.


Equinet Calendar 2018

January 11th 2018

Equality bodies assist victims of discrimination in a wide variety of ways. This calendar highlights some of the work that our members do to promote equal treatment in their respective countries


This is the final report of the Equality and Human Rights Commission’s (EHRC) research project looking at the effect of tax, welfare, social security and public spending.

Overall, changes to taxes, benefits, tax credits and Universal Credit (UC) announced since 2010 are regressive, however measured – that is, the largest impacts are felt by those with lower incomes. Those in the bottom two deciles will lose, on average, approximately 10% of net income, with much smaller losses for those higher up the income distribution.


Back to European Directory of Equality Bodies

General Contact Information

Full name in English:

Equality and Human Rights Commission

Full name in the national language(s):

Equality and Human Rights Commission

Postal address:
Fleetbank House, 2-6 Salisbury Square, London, EC4Y 8JX

General email address:

Equality Advisory Support Service (EASS)

Telephone number:

0808 800 0082



Other social media channels:

Facebook profile: Equality and Human Rights Commission & Youtube

Languages in which your institution can be contacted:


Person of contact for media enquiries:

Louisa Kane

Name of the Head of the equality body:

Rebecca Hilsenrath

Engagement with Equinet

Contact Person


Aidan Toomey