The Government's Equality Bill provides that a single body will be established
to address equality and human rights issues in the UK. The Bill, published
in March 2005, is intended to establish the Commission for Equality and Human
Rights (CEHR) and define its purpose. The CEHR will comprise the three existing
commissions and also be responsible for the new areas of equality legislation,
age, religion and belief and sexual orientation.
The Bill also provides for an extension of the existing discrimination legislation
relating to religion or belief and will create a duty on public authorities
to promote equal opportunities between the genders and place a prohibition
on sex discrimination in the exercise of public functions.