Racism remains widespread in Germany, new discrimination report concludes

Racism remains widespread in Germany, new discrimination report concludes

Discrimination continues to be widespread in Germany, according to the latest report from the Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency, which received more than 5.600 reports of discrimination in 2021, the majority of them incidents of racism. 

High number of cases of discrimination in Germany in 2021

5.617 incidents of discrimination were reported to the Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency (ADS) last year, official data revealed on Tuesday. This is the second-highest number of reports the agency has received since it was founded in 2006. It is a significant fall from the 6.383 cases recorded in 2020, but it was noted that many complaints in the previous year were made in connection with the coronavirus pandemic, particularly regarding mask rules. 

While discrimination can take many forms, the data shows that the most common kind of discrimination faced by people in Germany was racial. 37 percent of reports involved discrimination on the basis of a person’s skin colour or national origin. 

A high proportion of people also faced discrimination on the basis of disability and chronic illness (32 percent) and gender (20 percent). 9 percent faced discrimination on the basis of their religion, and 4 percent due to their sexual identity. Those who reported discrimination said it mostly affected their access to private services (33 percent) and their work (28 percent). 

Anti-Discrimination Officer urges people to take action

Presenting the report in Berlin, Ferda Ataman, the new head of the ADS, said, “The number of cases of discrimination reported to us is alarming. But it shows that more and more people are not reconciled to discrimination and are looking for help.” She appealed to anyone who faces discrimination to take action - if necessary by involving the police or German courts. 

Ataman further appealed to the federal government to give people affected by discrimination better opportunities to enforce their rights, arguing that the current legal situation “puts obstacles in the way of those affected.” She said that German regulations had a long way to go to meet international standards. 



Abi Carter

Managing Editor at IamExpat Media. Abi studied German and History at the University of Manchester and has since lived in Berlin, Hamburg and Utrecht, working since 2017 as a writer,...

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