Many refugees, immigrants or those with an immigrant background, as well as members of visible minorities experience racism and are subject to racial (and multiple) discrimination.
Since 2009, the Antidiskriminierungsberatung Brandenburg has been providing mobile counselling for victims of racial discrimination under the umbrella of Opferperspektive. It intervenes in cases where discrimination. The counselling service further is involved in matters of public relations.
There are many different ways to tackle discrimination. One is to take legal action. The German justice system provides various means for you to legally combat racial discrimination, depending on your wishes.
One of these ways is offered by the General Act on Equal Treatment (AGG) of 2006. Its stated purpose is »to prevent or to stop discrimination on the grounds of race or ethnic origin, gender, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation.« The AGG is mainly applied in two areas: in private legal transactions and in the working life.
In Private Legal Transactions
In the area of personal legal transactions, the law protects people from being discriminated against when it comes to access to and acquisition of goods and services. These include:
- renting an apartment
- access to, and service in, nightclubs and restaurants
- qualifying for a loan,
- taking out insurance,
- and access to everyday necessities.
In the Working Life
In the area of professional life, the law protects all of a company’s employees, as well as job applicants and workers who have already left the firm.
According to the General Act on Equal Treatment, it is illegal to discriminate against people regarding:
- the selection criteria for hiring and firing,
- wages or working conditions,
- access to career counselling or professional development, retraining, job training, or practical work experience programs or
- professional advancement.
Damages and Compensation
If you have been discriminated against at your workplace, you can lodge a complaint with the relevant authorities (your employer, superior or employee representative) or bring the case to labour court. Here you can make a claim for damages as well as additional compensation.
In the field of civil law, you have the right to demand that the discrimination be eradicated. Here you can also launch a suit to recover damages or receive compensation.
Above and beyond the General Act on Equal Treatment, there are a number of other ways to combat discrimination. Opfersperspektive offers mobile counselling services for victims of racist discrimination in Brandenburg. Don’t hesitate to contact us for advice and assistance!
Antidiskriminierungsberatung Brandenburg/Opferperspektive e.V.
Address: Rudolf-Breitscheid-Straße 164
Telephone: 0331 – 8170000
Telefax: 0331 – 8170001
Contact person: Nadja Hitzel-Abdelhamid
Mobil: 0151- 59100083
Note: The counselors speak English! Please approach the information and counseling centers initially in English. If needed an interpreter will be called in.English