The Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (WA), can be found here:
This act covers discrimination on a number of grounds and in a number of areas. The pertinent ground and area for the girl school uniform debate is sex and education.
While we encourage you to peruse the legislation document, we have outlined below the crucial areas for the girl school uniform debate:
Relevant sections for school uniforms:
Section 8 Discrimination on the ground of sex
(1) For the purposes of this Act, a person (in this subsection referred to as the discriminator ) discriminates against another person (in this subsection referred to as the aggrieved person ) on the ground of the sex of the aggrieved person if, on the ground of —
(a) the sex of the aggrieved person; or
(b) a characteristic that appertains generally to persons of the sex of the aggrieved person; or
(c) a characteristic that is generally imputed to persons of the sex of the aggrieved person,
the discriminator treats the aggrieved person less favourably than, in circumstances that are the same or are not materially different, the discriminator treats or would treat a person of the opposite sex.
(2) For the purposes of this Act, a person (in this subsection referred to as the discriminator ) discriminates against another person (in this subsection referred to as the aggrieved person ) on the ground of the sex of the aggrieved person if the discriminator requires the aggrieved person to comply with a requirement or condition —
(a) with which a substantially higher proportion of persons of the opposite sex to the aggrieved person comply or are able to comply; and
(b) which is not reasonable having regard to the circumstances of the case; and
(c) with which the aggrieved person does not or is not able to comply.
Section 18 Education
(2) It is unlawful for an educational authority to discriminate against a student on the ground of the student’s sex, marital status, pregnancy or breast feeding —
(a) by denying the student access, or limiting the student’s access, to any benefit provided by the educational authority; or
(b) by expelling the student; or
(c) by subjecting the student to any other detriment.
The Equal Opportunity Commission
The Equal Opportunity Commission released a media statement that strongly indicates that schools must provide appropriate choices for both genders at school. Further, the commission encourages students who are not provided with a range of appropriate uniform choices to lodge a complaint with the Commission.