Reducing and eliminating discrimination based on ethnicity, ‘race’, nationality and/or religion

Different definitions of discrimination exist, from general (social exclusion of individuals or groups) to legal (unequal treatment of an individual or group with respect to other individuals and groups on the basis of personal circumstances prohibited by law) and sociological definitions (a form of social practice derived from prejudices and stereotypes that are deeply rooted in the culture of a particular society, which results in formal or informal forms of segregation, marginalization or social exclusion of individuals or groups). In the Republic of Slovenia, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms is ensured by the Constitution and granted to everyone regardless of nationality, “race”, gender, language, religion, political or other belief, material status, birth, education, social status, disability or any other personal circumstance. Since the constitution protects against discrimination only formally, several laws have been adopted in recent years, and incitement to discrimination is punishable by the Penal Code.

Despite these legal bases, research data show that the level of discrimination in Slovenia is high. In order to deal with discrimination effectively, adequate research data is needed, yet – as pointed out by many international and European organizations, the lack of up-to-date information makes it particularly difficult to identify groups and individuals who are subject to discrimination. The reports especially highlight the problematic position of the Roma, the erased and the members of minorities from the former Yugoslavia, which confirms that the area of ​​discrimination based on ethnic origin, “race”, nationality and/or religion is the most relevant and sensitive issue for Slovenia. As a consequence, the creation of appropriate policies that should be derived from the data is also often hindered. Namely, there is a strong hesitation on the side of the authorities regarding the collection of disaggregated equality data for vulnerable groups due to the law on the protection of personal data. Therefore, the project addresses the following problem areas:

  1. There is insufficient transparent, disaggregated and credible information on the existence of discrimination on the grounds of ethnicity, ‘race’, nationality and religion.
  2. There are not enough proven cases of discrimination available.
  3. It is necessary to empower experts and institutions to recognize and act against discrimination.
  4. It is essential to continuously raise the awareness of the professional and general public.

 

AIMS

1) On the basis of a situation analysis from available resources to specify the areas of life which are more likelly to spur discrimination based on ethnicity, nationality, “race” and/or religion, and to formulate a methodology for acquiring qualitative and quantitative data directly from persons with a personal circumstance of ethnicity, nationality, “race” and/or religion.

2) To carry out situational testing and other quantitative and qualitative methods of research, obtain quality data from the field and verify the existence of discrimination for persons with a personal circumstance of ethnicity, nationality, “race” and/or religion in the following areas of life: work and employment, social and health care, education, access to goods and services, access to housing.

3) To inform experts about the results of the research project and to empower them to draft proposals and measures to eliminate discrimination based on the personal circumstances of ethnicity, nationality, “race” and/or religion.

4) To inform the general public about the results of the research project and to empower people to recognize discrimination based on the personal circumstances of ethnicity, nationality, “race” and/or religion, as well as to act on individual level.



Project execution

RESEARCH ACTIVITIES

The basic research activities of the project will run in two directions:

1) – Discrimination of persons by areas of life

2) – Situational testing, qualitative and quantitative analysis

 

1) Discrimination of persons by areas of life

The information on the areas of life where discrimination is most often based on ethnicity, nationality, “race” and religion is scattered across different documents. It is necessary to map the existing situation, therefore the project:

  1. a) Analyzes the situation based on the available resources (regulations, reports and recommendations of relevant national and international organizations).
  2. b) Defines the areas of life from which the likelihood of discrimination against persons arises on the basis of a personal circumstance of ethnicity, “race”, nationality and/or religion.
  3. c) Creates a methodology for obtaining qualitative and quantitative data directly from persons with a personal circumstance of ethnicity, “race”, nationality and/or religion.

 

2) Situational testing, qualitative and quantitative analysis

The second stream of research is based on the research finding that in Slovenia there is a lack of data on experiences of discrimination that would be obtained directly from members of minority groups and that would enable identification of the most problematic areas of life. Also, there is a lack of data directly proving discrimination, hence the project will adress these identified gaps by:

  1. a) Performing an online survey to examine experiences of discrimination for persons with a personal circumstance of ethnic origin, “race”, nationality and/or religion in the following areas of life: work and employment, social and health care, education and access to goods and services.
  2. b) Conducting situational tests to verify the existence of discrimination for persons with a personal circumstance of ethnic origin, “race”, nationality and/or religion in the following areas of life: work and employment, social and health care, education and access to goods and services.
  3. c) Conducting interviews or focus groups to verify the existence of discrimination for persons with a personal circumstance of ethnic origin, “race”, nationality and / or religion in the following areas of life: work and employment, social and health care, education and access to goods and services.

Results

EXPECTED RESULTS

In response to reports from international institutions that there is a lack of reliable research data in Slovenia, the proposed project aims at bridging the gap and at least partially completing this deficit. By quantitative and qualitative methods, we will obtain data on life situations in which discrimination is based on ethnicity, nationality, “race” and religion, which will enable the targeted formulation of policies and measures for its elimination.

In Slovenia, a number of studies have already been carried out, which provide qualitative and quantitative insights into the reproduction of discrimination at political, institutional and individual levels, however there is a noticeable lack of scientific situational analyses of discrimination in individual areas of life. The project will develop and implement its own methodology in this field, and will gain innovative research data that will enhance understanding of how individuals experience discrimination in their everyday life situations.

The project will contribute to reducing discrimination in society and hence to the promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms guaranteed in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Constitution of the Republic of Slovenia and in individual laws (for example, the Anti-Discrimination Act). It will empower the expert public and enable the preparation of effective policies, as well as raise awareness of discrimination on the basis of ethnicity, »race«, nationality and religion in the general public, empowering it to recognize discrimination in the areas under consideration.

Funders:

Slovenian Research Agency and The Advocate of the Principle of Equality