May 17, 2021

Blacks suffer from "unacceptable" harassment and discrimination in the European Union

Blacks suffer from "unacceptable" harassment and discrimination in the European Union



Black people living in the European Union (EU) face situations of discrimination and daily harassment, when they go out on the street or when looking for work or housing, exposes a community report made public today.

"A significant proportion of people of African descent experience harassment and violent racism in the 12 countries surveyed, including on the part of the police," denounces a report published today by the Fundamental Rights Agency (FRA) of the European Union.

The report, "Being black in the European Union", analyzes the experiences of some 5,800 black people in Austria, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Portugal, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

The majority of respondents are first-generation immigrants from 59 countries, mainly Somalia, Nigeria, Cape Verde and Ghana, but people born in the EU have also participated.

The document concludes that 30% of respondents have suffered racial harassment during the past five years and 5% physical assaults, including by police officers.

"In the 21st century, racial discrimination has no excuse, yet the black population of the EU is still a victim today of widespread and unacceptable levels of discrimination and harassment, simply because of the color of their skin." says the director of the FRA, Michael O'Flaherty.

The report states that 64% of those who felt they were victims of racist violence did not report what happened before any instance, in most cases considering that it would not serve anything or change the situation.

The study indicates that 24% of the respondents claimed to have been questioned by the Police in the last five years. Of them, almost half identified that this situation occurred because of their race or their origin.

According to the FRA, those identifications by ethnic profile undermine confidence in the police.

The FRA report also denounces the greatest difficulties in access to work or housing, with high percentages of unemployment or lower-quality jobs, even among those with higher education.

The FRA calls on the EU partner countries to redouble their efforts to further support the victims of racism and to properly prosecute the aggressors and take specific measures against discrimination, such as recruitment campaigns in the public sector targeting the black population.

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