There is concern that an unintended consequence of implementing a COVID-19 policy is the potential exposure to a claim of discrimination. The RYA has therefore released new Guidance for Clubs, Classes and Recognised Training Centres (RTCs) , ‘Covid-19 and Discrimination’ looks at the relevant legislation and provides advice on how best to ensure compliance with it when drawing up COVID-19 policies.

Member associations and service providers have a legal obligation to ensure that decisions made in response to the Coronavirus do not directly or indirectly discriminate against members, customers and employees with protected characteristics. The Guidance, which includes information applicable in England, Scotland and Wales, provides recommendations on planning how to support those at moderate risk to be active whilst minimising contact with others. 

Mandy Peters, RYA Legal Manager, said: “The enquiries that we have received from RYA affiliated Clubs, Classes and RTCs confirm that the physical and mental well-being of members and customers is the priority for these organisations during the planning process for the return to boating. We have received enquiries about best practice procedures when putting into place policies for COVID-19. We hope that the ‘COVID-19 and Discrimination’ Guidance will aid organisations in ensuring fair and equal service.” 

If your Club/Class/RTC has any queries or comments regarding this Guidance, kindly contact the Legal Team on 023 8060 4223 or legal@rya.org.uk.

Further COVID-19 advice for clubs, Classes and RTCs, as well as recreational boating in the UK and abroad, can be found on the RYA website.