Reports of racial discrimination in Germany have doubled since 2015

Reports of racial discrimination in Germany have doubled since 2015

Reports of racial discrimination in Germany have doubled since 2015

The number of reported cases of racial discrimination in Germany rose again in 2019, according to the federal anti-discrimination agency’s latest annual report. The agency says that “Germany is not doing enough to combat racism.” 

1.200 cases of racial discrimination reported in Germany in 2019

More and more people in Germany are reporting cases of racial discrimination to the federal anti-discrimination agency. “A total of 1.176 times in 2019, people turned to the advice of the anti-discrimination office because they felt discriminated against, due to their ethnic origin at work or in their everyday life,” the agency’s annual report states. 

According to the report, that’s a 10 percent increase in individuals reporting being put at a disadvantage, due to their ethnicity, when looking for housing or a job, for example. “The requests for advice on racial discrimination have increased disproportionately,” said Bernhard Franke, acting head of the anti-discrimination office. “They have more than doubled since 2015. This clearly shows us that Germany is not doing enough to combat racism.” 

Racial discrimination accounts for ⅓ of agency’s cases

In total in 2019, the anti-discrimination agency’s advisory team supported a total of 3.580 people who reported facing disadvantages in everyday life or at work due to their appearance, gender, religion or other factors. The total number of enquiries rose by 3,8 percent compared to 2018, when 3.455 people sought advice.

Around one in three of these cases in 2019 involved racial discrimination. 29 percent were based on gender discrimination. A significant number of cases also revolved around discrimination based on disability, age, religion and sexual identity. 

Although there is a ban on discrimination in Germany’s General Equal Treatment Act, in practice people have a much harder time enforcing their rights, said Franke. The anti-discrimination agency and other similar associations in Germany do not have the right to sue; instead, they help affected individuals enforce their rights, seek opinions from the other side and attempt to arrange amicable agreements. 



Abi Carter

Abi studied History & German at the University of Manchester. She has since worked as a writer, editor and content marketeer, but still has a soft spot for museums, castles...

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