The protected characteristic of gender reassignment is defined as where a person has proposed, started or completed a process to change his or her sex. A transsexual person has the protected characteristic of gender reassignment; a person is no longer required to be under medical supervision to be protected. The Act covers direct and indirect discrimination and harassment because of gender reassignment – whether it is perceived, actual or associated.
It is discrimination against transsexual people to treat them less favourably for being absent from work because they propose to undergo, are undergoing or have undergone gender reassignment than they would be treated if they were absent because they were ill or injured.
The Equality and Diversity Team (email: firstname.lastname@example.org or tel: 0117 33 18087) can provide specific advice to colleagues on this area of equality, as it applies to staff and students.