Regulation – Government needs more muscle

The government should beef up its regulatory muscle to push reluctant employers into adopting anti-discrimination policies, according to the government-appointed Better Regulation Task Force.

But the group, which includes accountancy representatives, has stopped short of recommending new legislation to enforce equal opportunities in the workplace.

Unveiling its findings last week, taskforce chairman, Northern Foods chief Lord Christopher Haskins, said: ‘Our research has led us to conclude that more legislation is not the answer. The real challenge is to make existing regulations work effectively by backing them up with powerful, non-legislative levers.’

The findings come as trade minister Ian McCartney pushes some professional accountancy bodies to review their ethnic monitoring policies.

CIMA said this month it was looking again at ethnic monitoring policy after fresh concerns arising from the inquiry into the racist murder of black teenager Stephen Lawrence.

A Baker Tilly partner, Teresa Graham, is deputy chairman of the 18-strong taskforce, which was set up to advise the government on action needed to improve the effectiveness of its regulation. The group also includes Robert Purry, a tax partner at Grant Thornton.

Related reading