Racial/ethnic/caste/origin discrimination - an introduction

Below are select introductory materials on racial, ethnic, caste and origin discrimination.  Further reports from a wide range of sources are in the "Racial/ethnic/caste/origin discrimination" section of our site.


Key reports & guidance

Equality at work: Tackling the challenges - Global Report under the follow-up to the ILO Declaration on Fundamental Principles and Rights at Work [PDF], International Labour Organization, 2007

Race to the top: the place of ethnic minority groups within the UK workforce [PDF], Business in the Community, Dec 2008

The Glass Box: Exclusion of Roma from Employment [PDF], European Roma Rights Centre, Feb 2007 (see in particular chapter 2.2, pgs. 26-28, "Employers")

Subtle Yet Significant: The Existence and Impact of Everyday Racial Discrimination in the Workplace, Loyola University in New Orleans, 2003

Human Rights Translated: A Business Reference Guide [PDF], OHCHR, IBLF, UN Global Compact & Castan Centre for Human Rights Law at Faculty of Law, Monash University, Dec 2008 (scroll down to page 77: “Article 26: Right to equality before the law, equal protection of the law, and rights of non-discrimination”)

The Ambedkar Principles: Principles and Guidelines to address Caste Discrimination in the Private Sector, IDSN (International Dalit Solidarity Network), Sep 2009


Concerns, company responses & non-responses

The Resource Centre invites companies to respond to allegations of misconduct.  Below are examples of allegations and company responses regarding racial/ethnic/caste/origin discrimination.  We also indicate when a company has not responded.

Bosnia & Herzegovina: Amnesty International report finds employment discrimination, raises concerns about access to mass grave sites, Feb 2006. Responses from Aluminij, Mittal Steel.

Bosnia & Herzegovina: Amnesty Intl. writes follow-up letter to Aluminij, regarding Aluminij’s response to Amnesty’s report on ethnic discrimination in employment, Jun 2006. No response received from Aluminij.

France: Lawsuit alleges that Disneyland Paris set limits on number of black employees it accepted from employment agency, Jan 2006. Response from Walt Disney.

Guyana: Report on poor health & safety standards at a wood processing plant operated by Chinese company Baishanlin. The Guyanese workers said they were restrained in ways that the Chinese workers were not, Aug 2007.  Response from Baishanlin.

Haiti: Report raises concerns about treatment of Haitian sugar cane workers at Grupo Vicini's plantations, including "atmosphere of racism, ongoing child labour", Sep 2009. Response from Grupo Vicini.

Hungary: Fines issued against 3 companies because they rejected Roma (Gypsies) applicants for a position after "interviews" that lasted only 30 seconds, Oct 2006.  No response from the companies.


Positive steps by companies

Africa: Interview with De Beers CEO, highlighting efforts to combat conflict diamonds, poverty, black empowerment in Africa.

France: Financial firms including BNP Paribas, Société Général take steps to diversify workforce.

India: Intl. Dalit Solidarity Network Annual Report 2008 - with section on private sector developments - refers to initiatives by Daimler, HSBC, Shell.

Namibia: Old Mutual in Namibia's largest black economic empowerment deal.

South Africa: Sasol to sell $3.2 billion of shares to black investors, in largest deal of its kind to help compensate for apartheid discrimination.

Spain: Grupo Siro signs agreement to hire workers from the ethnic gypsy minority. [Spanish only]

USA: Companies support renewal of voting rights law for minorities - including CBS.

USA: DiversityInc announces "Top 50 companies for diversity" – top 5 companies include Johnson & Johnson, AT&T.

Vietnam: UNICEF and IKEA project supports education for ethnic minorities.

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Historias y componentes discutidos en las áreas detalladas

Artículo
25 July 2006
+ English - Ocultar

Autor(a): Josephine Hearn, The Hill [USA]

When the Voting Rights Act (VRA) came before Congress this month, it enjoyed the vigorous backing of civil-rights advocates, social progressives and other familiar groups. The measure also attracted support from a surprising constituency: corporate...

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Artículo
26 May 2006
+ English - Ocultar

Autor(a): Amnesty International

Aluminij claims that “[n]ot a single employee in Aluminij d.d. Mostar has been fired regardless to her/his nationality”. In fact, during the war Aluminij pursued a policy of ethnic discrimination, the effects of which continue to be felt, and elements...

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Artículo
26 January 2006
+ English - Ocultar

Autor(a): Amnesty International

...[Discrimination] continues to be one of the most serious obstacles to the return of refugees and internally displaced persons (IDPs). This report focuses on the continuing discrimination against workers from ethnic minorities, including in equal...

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Artículo
15 January 2006
+ English - Ocultar

Autor(a): Molly Moore, Washington Post

Gerald Roffat, an intern at one of the world's largest temporary agencies [Adecco], helped launch a lawsuit alleging the firm used code to identify blacks and prevent them from being hired at some of Paris's best-known companies...The clients that...

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