The A-Z Pre-Employment Guide for employers & employees

Appendix 1

The Prohibited Grounds Of Discrimination In The Human Rights Act 1993 Section 21(1)

For the purposes of this Act, the prohibited grounds of discrimination are:

(a) Sex, which includes pregnancy and childbirth.

(b) Marital status, which means being:

(i) Single

(ii) Married, in a civil union, or in a de facto relationship

(iii) The surviving spouse of a marriage or the surviving partner of a civil union or de facto relationship

(iv) Separated from a spouse or civil union partner

(v) A party to a marriage or civil union that is now dissolved, or to a de facto relationship that is now ended.

(c) Religious belief

(d) Ethical belief, which means the lack of a religious belief, whether in respect of a particular religion or religions or all religions.

(e) Colour

(f) Race

(g) Ethnic or national origins, which includes nationality or citizenship.

(h) Disability, which means:

(i) Physical disability or impairment

(ii) Physical illness

(iii) Psychiatric illness

(iv) Intellectual or psychological disability or impairment

(v) Any other loss or abnormality of psychological, physiological, or anatomical structure or function

(vi) Reliance on a guide dog, wheelchair, or other remedial means

(vii) The presence in the body of organisms capable of causing illness.

(i) Age, which means:

(i) For the purposes of sections 22 to 41 and section 70 of this Act and in relation to any different treatment based on age that occurs in the period beginning with the 1st day of February 1994 and ending with the close of the 31st day of January 1999, any age commencing with the age of 16 years and ending with the date on which persons of the age of the person whose age is in issue qualify for national superannuation under section 7 of the New Zealand Superannuation and Retirement Income Act 2001 (irrespective of whether or not the particular person qualifies for national superannuation at that age or any other age)

(ii) For the purposes of sections 22 to 41 and section 70 of this Act and in relation to any different treatment based on age that occurs on or after the 1st day of February 1999, any age commencing with the age of 16 years

(iii) For the purposes of any other provision of Part 2 of this Act, any age commencing with the age of 16 years.

(j) Political opinion, which includes the lack of a particular political opinion or any political opinion.

(k) Employment status, which means:

(i) Being unemployed

(ii) Being a recipient of a benefit under the Social Security Act 1964 or an entitlement under the Injury Prevention, Rehabilitation, and Compensation Act 2001.

(l) Family status, which means:

(i) Having the responsibility for part-time care or fulltime care of children or other dependants

(ii) Having no responsibility for the care of children or other dependants

(iii) Being married to, or being in a civil union or de facto relationship with, a particular person

(iv) Being a relative of a particular person.

(m) Sexual orientation, which means a heterosexual, homosexual, lesbian, or bisexual orientation.

Section 21(2) Each of the grounds specified in subsection (1) of this section is a prohibited ground of discrimination, for the purposes of this Act, if:

(a) It pertains to a person or to a relative or associate of a person, and

(b) It either:

(i) Currently exists or has in the past existed

(ii) Is suspected or assumed or believed to exist or to have existed by the person alleged to have discriminated.