July 2008. The European commission has published the results of its latest Eurobarometer study of discrimination in European countries. The study is intended to measure perceived discrimination based on age, disability, ethnicity, gender, and sexual orientation in each of the member countries. It also allows comparison with a previous round of the survey two years earlier. The results paint a mixed picture. On the positive side, most questions suggested an overall decrease in bias and discrimination. On the negative side, the results suggested that discrimination remains a widespread problem throughout most of Europe.
The report is long and complex but here are a few of the findings. On average for all countries,62% of Europeans reported that there was widespread discrimination based on ethnic origin, 51% based on sexual orientation, 45% based on disability, 42% based on age, and 36% based on gender. There was considerable variation from country to country. For example, on average 45% of Europeans reported that discrimination against people with disabilities was widespread, but the percentages in individual countries ranged from well over half in France (61%), Italy (56%), and Portugal (55%) to under a third in Cyprus (30%), Ireland (25%), and Malta (21%).
PDF copies of this study (summary or detailed versions) are available for download along with a variety of other Eurobarometer reports.