Employment Equality Act, 1977

Reference of disputes to Court.

19.—(1) Subject to sections 26, 27 (1) and 27 (2), a dispute as to whether or not a person has discriminated may be referred by any person concerned to the Court.

(2) Where a dispute is referred under this section to the Court, it shall endeavour to settle the dispute through an industrial relations officer of the Court or refer the dispute to an equality officer for investigation and recommendation, or make such a reference where the industrial relations officer fails to effect a settlement.

(3) Where a dispute is referred under this section to an equality officer he shall investigate the dispute and issue a recommendation thereon.

(4) A recommendation under this section shall be conveyed—

(a) in the case of a dispute referred under this section, to the Court and the parties to the dispute, or

(b) in the case of a reference under section 20, to the Court, the Minister and to such person or persons as appear to the equality officer to be concerned.

(5) Save only where a reasonable cause can be shown, a reference under this section shall be lodged not later than six months from the date of the first occurrence of the act alleged to constitute the discrimination.

(6) Subject to subsection (7) the powers conferred on an equality officer by section 6 (4) of the Act of 1974 in relation to an employer may be exercised in relation to a person other than an employer.

(7) Nothing in this Act shall be construed as requiring any person to furnish any reference (or a copy thereof) from an employer or any report (or a copy thereof), whether of a confidential nature or otherwise, relating to the character or the suitability for employment of any other person, or to disclose the contents of such a reference or report.