Bodies for the promotion of equal treatment (article 13 Directive 2000/43)

AuthorMatthias Mahlmann
a) Body/bodies design ated for the prom otion of equal treatment irrespective of
racial/ethnic origin according to Article 13 of the Racial Equality Directive
The Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency (Antidiskriminierungsstelle des Bundes) (ADS)424
was established in August 2006 in Berlin, under Section 25 AGG. There are also various
agencies with roles related to discrimination on the federal and regional level, most notably
the Federal and Land Commissioners for Migration, Refugees and Int egration and the
Federal Government Commissioner f or Matters Related to Ethnic German Resettlers and
National Minorities (Beauftragter für Aussiedlerfragen und nationale Minderheiten), for
Matters relating to Persons with Disabilities (Beauftragte der Bundesregierung für die
Belange behi nderter Menschen) and the German Institute for Human Rights (Deutsches
Institut für Menschenrechte), which undertake advisory work for the Government and other
public bodies, publish (extensive) reports an d, to a limited deg ree, provide individual
advice to victims of discrimination.
b) Political, economic and social context of the designated body
Since its creation, the ADS has gai ned widespread acceptance and has b ecome a well-
respected voice in debates on discrimination issues.
As in other European countries, there is a lively political debate about questions of equality
and diversity and th e many fields of society in which these questions arise. A political
debate that is widely supportive of equality of people of different sexual orientation had
led to the introduction of ‘marriage for all’; as of 2017, marriage is op en to homosexual
couples under German law.
An intense debate focuses on the consequences of the refugee crisis, which has particular
relevance for Germany, given the comparativ ely high number of refugees that Germany
has admitted. On the one hand, there are voices for integration and non-discrimination,
epitomised in th e now famous Willkommenskultur (culture of welcome) and on the other
hand, th ere has been the rise of Alternative für Deutschland (AFD), a xenophobic party
that is now strongly represented in the Bundestag. Although these debates have not
affected the institutional standing of the equality body as such, they are important f or the
political environment in which the body operates, not th e least given its activities to
promote the idea of non-discrimination on the grounds of race and ethnic origin.
c) Institu tional architecture
In Germany, the designated body does not form part of a body with m ultiple mandates.
Non-discrimination is the sole mandate of the ADS an d its resources are devoted to this
d) Status of the designated body/bodies general independence
i) Status of the body
The Federal Anti-Discrimination Agency (ADS) is organisationally associated with the
Ministry of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (Section 26 AGG). The head
of the agency is appointed by the Minister of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and
Youth after a proposal by the Government.
424 Website: In English:

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