EurActiv - Letters to the Editor

Sir,

Regarding ‘Parliament backs calls for EU anti-discrimination law’:

Millions of young people in Europe face discrimination every day in access to goods and services, such as healthcare, education, insurance and banking products, and access to participation in policymaking.

I support the European Parliament’s strong call for comprehensive legislation to combat discrimination covering a range of grounds – including disability, age, religion or belief and sexual orientation – and all areas of life. If the EU wants to live up to its promises of achieving equality, all EU citizens should have the same legal protection.

Whereas protection for people with disabilities is of crucial importance – and indeed, it needs to be urgently addressed by a directive – it is unacceptable to build a hierarchy of different grounds of discrimination. If disability is to be considered as the only priority ground, there is a risk of existing legal gaps being extended.

Furthermore, “people who are subject to multiple forms of discrimination”, for instance, young Muslim women or disabled gay people, “are particularly vulnerable”, as the adopted petition, written by MEP Liz Lynne, stresses.

Therefore, I totally agree than a specific provision protecting against multiple discrimination should be included in the new legislation.

President Barroso should stick to his promises delivered in 2004 and outlaw unfair treatment on all grounds.

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