Age discrimination most widespread form of discrimination in Latvia, says Ministry report

In Latvia, 40% of the population have encountered some form of discrimination, according to a public opinion survey conducted on behalf of the Ministry of Welfare (LM) on the public's understanding of aspects of discrimination. 

The survey concluded that in society as a whole, representatives of the Roma community face a great deal of discrimination, as stated by almost half of respondents (46%).

However, the most common form of discrimination in Latvia is age discrimination, with a person considered either too young or too old (51% of respondents).

Discrimination due to ethnicity ranks third - this is what 44% of the surveyed respondents believe.

The data obtained in the study show that 40% of Latvian society has encountered discrimination of one form or another. However, the Ministry suggested that while this might discrimination is widespread, it might also suggest people are more willing to broach the subject than they once were.

"Perhaps an increase in the prevalence of discrimination is observed, but it may also be that the ability to recognize discrimination is increasing in society as a whole. It is also possible that members of society feel a greater sense of confidence and security, which allows them to speak about the discrimination they have experienced," the Ministry stated.

Discrimination is unjustified different treatment based on gender, race, color, age, disability, religious or political beliefs, national or social origin, property or family status, sexual orientation or other unreasonable grounds.

The purpose of the survey was to find out the citizens' opinion and understanding of discrimination due to gender, race or ethnic origin, religion or belief, disability, age or sexual orientation and to compare the obtained data with the results of the "Eurobarometer" study on discrimination in the European Union conducted in 2019. 

The results and information of the survey will be used when creating future social inclusion policy.

The research was carried out in October and November 2022 by Berg Research and involved 1,056 adults aged 18-74 plus 217 young people aged 13-17, 134 people who identify as members of sexual minorities and 229 people with registered disabilities. 

The full report is available to read (in Latvian) at the Welfare Ministry website: https://www.lm.gov.lv/lv/sabiedriskas-domas-aptauja-par-sabiedribas-izpratni-par-diskriminacijas-aspektiem-28122022

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