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European Commission launches open public consultation on possible gaps in the legal protection against discrimination on grounds of racial or ethnic origin

On the 17th January 2022, the European Commission officially launched a new open public consultation on possible gaps in Council Directive 2000/43/EC implementing the principle of equal treatment between persons irrespective of racial or ethnic origin (‘Racial Equality Directive’).

What is the purpose of this public consultation?

In doing so, the EC aims to remedy the limitations in the Directive’s scope and  follow through on its Communication entitled “A Union of equality: EU anti-racism action plan 2020-25”, which outlined how it would explore ‘possible gaps related to EU legislation prohibiting discrimination based on ethnic or racial origin’. This Communication pointed at potential gaps in the area of structurally-embedded discrimination, as well as the potential for unequal treatment by Artificial Intelligence systems. Furthermore, the Commission’s report adopted on 19 March 2021 on the application of Directive 2000/43/EC pointed at some limitations in the Directive’s scope and also referred to the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on some ethnic groups. 

The purpose of this consultation is to help the Commission to identify such potential gaps and suitable measures to address them.  In launching this public consultation, the EC is seeking input from the following groups: persons at risk of discrimination based on ethnic or racial origin; civil society organisations; social partners; equality bodies; public authorities and, international and European institutions/organisations.

What is MPG’s role?

More than 25 years ago, MPG was a driving force behind the adoption of the very EU legislation that is now being reviewed. Moreover, as a coordinator of the ‘European Network of Legal Experts in Gender Equality and Non-discrimination’, MPG has been advocating for gaps in the legislation to be identified and addressed. As such, MPG fully supports the European Commission’s decision to open a public consultation on possible gaps and encourages all relevant parties and individuals to participate and, in doing so, help to combat discrimination on grounds of racial or ethnic origin.

How can I contribute?

You can contribute to the public consultation by completing the questionnaire provided on the EC’s website here. The consultation closes on the 11th April 2022, so be sure to respond before this date.

Public consultation on gaps in racial equality

About the Migration Policy Group (MPG)

MPG is an independent think-and-do-tank based in Brussels. MPG’s purpose is rooted in its ability to inspire networks to provide evidence-based projects, research and campaigns in the areas of integration, migration and anti-discrimination.

Learn more about the Migration Policy Group.