The Equality Act also covers the Police or armed forces, and people on practical work experience, whether paid or unpaid. However, some volunteers are excluded from the protection of the employment provisions of the Equality Act.
The Equality Act covers people with a disability and also those who are not disabled but who the employer mistakenly believes to have a disability. This is known as perception discrimination. For example, it would be unlawful disability discrimination if an employer were to select an employee for redundancy because he wrongly believed she had cancer.
It also protects those who suffer discrimination because they associate with the disabled, for example as their carers. This is known as associative discrimination.