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positive actionA term used in the context of (UK) labour law which, unlike positive discrimination, is generally allowed by legislation: employers can offer disadvantaged groups access to facilities for training and encourage job applications from under-represented groups, but cannot discriminate in selecting candidates for employment or promotion or the terms and conditions on which they are employed.
The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) provides examples of permitted positive action, including placing advertisements where they are more likely to be seen by the members of a disadvantaged group or “providing computer training courses to those over 60 because they may have had less exposure to training in the past”. Employers must also ensure that before committing to positive action they have evidence to show that the targeted group is under-represented within the workforce or is likely to have a particular disadvantage in taking up or doing that type of work.
Analogous to the US term “affirmative action”.