Racial discrimination prevalent at work and school

Demonstrators took the streets of Geneva in January to protest against racism and xenophobia in Swiss politics. © Keystone/Martial Trezzini

Swiss counselling centres have reported 278 cases of discrimination based on colour, ethnicity and religion last year – down 10% on 2017.

This content was published on April 8, 2019 - 11:04

The authors of the reportExternal link published on Monday say the reasons for the decrease are very diverse and the figures cannot be used to make general statements about racial discrimination in the country.

As in previous years, many reported cases occurred at the workplace and in schools, childcare or further education, according to the Federal Commission against Racism and the group

Verbal abuse was the main form of racial discrimination while xenophobia was the most frequently reported motive, followed by hostility against coloured people, the authors of the annual report say.

They caution that the data, compiled by 24 counselling centres across Switzerland, is unlikely to show the full extent of discrimination in Switzerland.

But the report wants to highlight the range of counselling offered by the centres, according to a press release.

Besides the 278 investigated cases, the centres also registered 108 cases without sufficient evidence, 27 cases where no racial discrimination could be proven as well as 59 cases where the victims reported cases but without an entitlement to further investigation.

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