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Positive duty

The Equal Opportunity Act 2010 introduces a positive duty requiring all organisations covered by the law – including government, business, employers and service providers – to take reasonable and proportionate measures to eliminate discrimination, sexual harassment and victimisation as far as possible.

The positive duty is aimed at making sure organisations prevent discrimination happening in the first place, rather than responding after a complaint has been made. It also makes good business sense to be proactive. 

It is important that everyone in your organisation knows about the positive duty and understands their responsibilities. It will help you stop discrimination before it happens and will take us a step closer to creating equal opportunity for everyone in Victoria.

Who does the positive duty apply to?

The positive duty applies to everyone who already has responsibilities under the Equal Opportunity Act. It could apply to you if you:

  • are an employer
  • provide accommodation, education, or goods and services
  • are a club or sporting organisation.

What do I need to do?

  • Understand the law.
  • Identify potential problems.
  • Set out an action plan.
  • Seek advice and help if I need it.

Our role

An individual cannot pursue a complaint against an organisation for not meeting its positive duty. However, if the Commission becomes aware of a serious issue that relates to a group of people, we may decide to investigate the matter further.

Contact us for more information about the positive duty, to discuss your organisation’s equal opportunity plans or to find out about other resources and training.