LONDON: Muslim job-seekers in the UK are disadvantaged, the British government has acknowledged after Muslims were found to be facing significant pay gaps compared with those who identify as Christian.
The Government Equalities Office (GEO) has published its response to last year’s hard-hitting report by the women and equalities select committee on employment opportunities for Muslims, the Evening Standard reported.
Britain’s 2.7 million Muslims were found to have the highest levels of disadvantage in finding work and face significant pay gaps compared with those who identify as Christian.
The GEO accepted a “lack of comprehensive data” is hindering progress in getting more Muslim people into higher education, which in turn has an impact on their chances of employment.
It said more could be done to raise awareness among employers about workplace discrimination and it also accepted that informal recruitment practices mean bias may not always be “picked up”.
The Government said it will not come up with a specific plan to tackle workplace inequality for Muslims, despite this being one of the report’s recommendations.
Instead it highlighted its work to support disadvantaged communities. The GEO said it will ask universities to extend the admissions data they collect beyond the current “Asian, black, mixed and white” categories.
It will also meet commerce and industry leaders to discuss the best way of raising awareness of the Equality Act 2010 with employers.