Is the following scenario proscribed by UK law:
- An employer mandates that all employees complete an online learning activity. This includes an educational document followed by a multiple choice quiz with a mandatory 7/10 pass rate.
- For one of the questions, the acceptable answer implies an empirical claim. For example, "What is a benefit of having employee demographics that more closely resemble the demographics of wider society?" and the acceptable answer (among five choices) being "We can provide better customer service" (the empirical claim implied here is: businesses whose employee demographics more closely resemble wider society provide a better customer service).
- They provide no evidence to support this claim, in the educational document or elsewhere, either through their own research or with reference to published studies.
- An employee refuses to complete the quiz after requesting evidence for the aforementioned claim and being given none. The employee says they do not believe the claim to be true without evidence, that therefore they cannot provide the acceptable answer in good faith, and hence that this means they effectively have a 7/9 pass rate (if, say, they omit the problematic question).
- The employer pursues disciplinary action against the employee.
In particular, can the employee in the above scenario claim to be the victim of discrimination?
Does this come down to whether agreeing or not with an empirical claim without evidence constitutes "philosophical belief" under the Equality Act 2010?