Is it unlawful to discriminate against part-time workers?

Yes, such discrimination is prohibited by the Part-time Workers (Prevention of Less Favourable Treatment) Regulations. Under the Regulations, workers have the statutory right, as part-timers, to be treated the same as comparable full-time workers – that is, workers on the same type of contract with the same employer.

This right is not subject to any qualifying service requirements. If your employer wants to treat you differently, they must be able to justify that different treatment on objective grounds.

A part-time worker is entitled to receive, on request, a written statement of reasons for less favourable treatment from the employer. This statement (or absence of it) may be taken into account by an employment tribunal hearing a complaint under the regulations.

Note: This content is provided as general background information and should not be taken as legal advice or financial advice for your particular situation. Make sure to get individual advice on your case from your union, a source on our free help page or an independent financial advisor before taking any action.