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More MPs with a migrant background in new German parliament

The recent national elections in Germany have brought 34 MPs with a migrant background in the Bundestag – about 5.5% of all MPs, up from 3.4% in the previous legislature. In particular, the of MPs with Turkish roots doubled. Karamba Diaby, a Senegal-born chemist, became Germany’s first Black MP.

Germany-candidatesAlthough 8.2% of Germany’s 80 million people are immigrants, or the children or grandchildren of immigrants, relatively few have made it into the federal legislature. Until now there were no black lawmakers in Parliament, despite more than 500,000 people of recent African origin believed to be living in Germany.

A closer look at party lists indicates that left-wing parties (SPD, Greens, Die Linke) put forward more candidates with a migrant background than right-wing parties (CDU and CSU). This follows several calls.

MPG’s toolkit on Becoming a Party of choice includes a benchmarking tool to help parties opening to diversity and equality, from voters and candidates to staff and suppliers. The benchmarks looks at at the following questions, for instance:

  • Are equality data used to map the party’s electorate?
  • Are candidates with a migrant background allocated as many winnable constituencies or winnable seats as other candidates?
  • To what extent does the composition of party leadership and executive structure reflects society’s diversity?

The toolkit also includes a comparative analysis of various initiatives initiated in this field by political parties in France, Germany and the UK.

A new project, DivPol, was launched earlier this year and will use MPG’s tool.