Expert, Affordable, Employment Advice

Is ‘fatism’ the final socially-acceptable form of discrimination?

A new report suggests that obese people are less likely to get a job and are viewed as ‘lazy’ and lacking in will power.

While the study for the Department of Work and Pensions found no direct link between obesity and unemployment, it warned that some bosses were reluctant to hire obese applicants (see article here).

The study cited a survey which indicated that nearly half of the 1,000-strong sample of employers indicated they were less inclined to recruit those seen at interview to be obese.

The law protects workers from discrimination on the basis of sex, race or disability and there have been questions as to whether obesity is in itself a disability. Case authority suggests that it is not, but lines may be blurred where obesity causes an underlying medical condition.

This recent report suggests that ‘fatism’ is perhaps the final socially-acceptable form of discrimination which means that employees may have little redress if they believe their size is responsible for lack of promotion or job offer.

Sarah Rushton (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

This is intended for general information only and should not be considered as giving advice in relation to any individual case nor be taken as applying to any particular case. No liability is accepted for any such use of the information contained.