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Employment Of Immigrants (Linguistic Skill)

Volume 981: debated on Monday 24 March 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for Employment how many small businesses and larger firms were prosecuted under the Race Relations Act for allegedly discriminating against an immigrant from the Indian Subcontinent by refusing him or her a job because he or she could not speak English to a satisfactory degree; how many of these cases were successful; how many were brought by the Commission for Racial Equality; and what compensation was awarded in each case.

Information about applications to industrial tribunals under the employment provisions of the Race Relations Act 1976 is obtained from statistical returns rendered when action on each case is complete. Articles based on analyses of these returns for the periods 13 June 1977 to 30 June 1978 and 1 July 1978 to 30 June 1979 have been published in the Employment Gazettes for October 1978 (page 1185) and December 1979 (page 1238), which are available in the Library. These summarise the information which is available about applicants, respondents and the nature and outcome of each case.The returns, however, do not identify cases where jobs were allegedly refused because the applicant could not speak English satisfactorily or classify applicants by ethnic or national origin. I regret, therefore, that the information requested is not available.