Tackling discrimination at work

How we support all our members to create fair workplaces

female optom with male patient

Optical businesses benefit immensely from the diverse backgrounds and experiences of their team members. Diversity of background and experience brings diversity of ideas and talent. It also reflects the diversity of the communities we serve.

All employees have a right to be treated fairly and to feel safe at work. That includes feeling safe from unfair discrimination.  

Employers have a moral as well as a legal duty to ensure that everyone is treated in a fair, respectful and non-discriminatory way. This means fostering a fair and safe working environment, and taking all reasonable measures to protect employees from harassment, abuse or discrimination.

This duty can encompass discrimination from customers, clients, patients, colleagues and contractors as well as from managers or as a result of the organisation’s own policies. 

Employers have a responsibility to take preventative steps to ensure discrimination does not occur and to act if they see, or are notified of, any issue or concern.

Our commitment

The AOP is committed to:

  • Supporting our employer members to create safe working environments in which employees are protected from discrimination
  • Supporting our employee members if they are subject to abuse, harassment or discrimination 

We know that many people working in the sector have experienced racist abuse or discrimination. We are committed to supporting our members facing such situations.

Our web pages provide advice and information for both employers and employees and explain how to get support on any issues you are dealing with.

You will also find a range of other resources to support you in doing the right thing.

Member input

We are grateful to the AOP members who have contributed information and ideas to this work, including Hamza Mussa, and Naveed Butt and his colleagues, whose ideas led to the creation of the Anti-racism and equality team.

We welcome comments, experiences and more ideas. You can share these on the AOP Community or email our Anti-racism and equality team at [email protected].