Legal briefing

Sex, race and disability discrimination cases are booming in the public sector, with race claims particularly popular in the health service, to judge from the employment appeal tribunal's caseload.

Employers should brace themselves for a new raft of claims following a draft paper from the European Commission outlining a proposed new directive to combat discrimination on grounds of age, sexual orientation, religion and belief.

The Confederation of British Industry has already come out against protection from discrimination on age and belief grounds. The directive has to be approved by all 15 members of the European Union before it can become law.