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European Commission adopts its report on the implementation of the EU anti-discrimination Directives

On 17 January 2014 the European Commission adopted its implementation report on the state of implementation of the Racial Equality Directive and the Employment Equality Directive in the 28 EU Member States. The extensive report is largely based on the country specific reports produced and updated annually by the European Network of Legal Experts in the Non-Discrimination field managed by MPG and Human European Consultancy. It also includes additional analytical information provided by the European Network.

comp-anal-2012-coverIn this third[1] implementation report of the anti-discrimination Directives the European Commission notes that all 28 EU Member States have transposed the Directives and have developed some experience in working within this framework. The Commission therefore focuses its report on the application of the Directives by the Member States as well as their interpretation by the Court of Justice of the EU and by national courts. The report also identifies the challenges that remain in some countries, such as a lack of awareness and underreporting of discrimination cases, a lack of equality data and problems in relation to access to justice for claimants. In addition, an important challenge relates to the remedies and sanctions available in cases where a finding of discrimination is made, as these cannot always be said to fulfil the requirement of effectiveness, dissuasiveness and proportionality as imposed by the Directives. All these issues in relation to the correct application and interpretation of the Directives have been raised previously by the Legal Network in its publications, for instance in the comparative report Developing Anti-Discrimination Law in Europe.

[1] In 2006 and 2008 respectively, the European Commission had adopted separate implementation reports; COM(2006) 643 final, 30.10.2006, on Directive 2000/43/EC and COM(2008) 225 final/2, 8.7.2008, on Directive 2000/78/EC.