Germany

 

2014

  • Rank: 10 out of 38
  • MIPEX Score: 61
  • LABOUR MARKET MOBILITY 86
  • FAMILY REUNION 57
  • EDUCATION 47
  • HEALTH 43
  • POLITICAL PARTICIPATION 63
  • PERMANENT RESIDENCE 60
  • ACCESS TO NATIONALITY 72
  • ANTI-DISCRIMINATION 58

Key Findings

Changes in context

  • One of Europe’s major destination countries since 1960s, traditionally composed of family migrants and former guest-workers
  • Immigrants contribute to the positive state of DE labour market, with one of the highest and growing over employment rates, reaching nearly 78% in 2014 (behind only CH and IS/NO/SE)
  • Growing number of newcomers since 2008 (mostly EU citizens since global recession, but also rise in non-EU newcomers by 75% to 200,000 in 2013) and rise in the numbers of asylum-seekers 
  • One of the few developed countries with improving attitudes towards immigrants: 83% think DE is a welcoming country and 72% that non-EU and DE citizens should have equal rights

Key Common Statistics

Country of net migration since:% Non-EU citizens% Foreign-born% Non-EU of foreign-born% Non-EU university-educated % from low or medium-developed (HDI) country
1960s5.7%12.4%64% 38%
UN 2010 data in 2013Eurostat 2013Eurostat 2013Eurostat 2013Note: Adults aged 18-64, Eurostat 2013Eurostat 2013

Changes in policy

DE makes slow but steady progress on providing both equal rights and greater support, takes time to build consensus, generally pilots and then evaluates whether new policies are effective at boosting outcomes. Earlier in 2008/9, DE took 1 step forward and 1 step back, raising and then lowering its score. Non-EU immigrants could benefit from guaranteed enough free and accessible courses to pass the new common citizenship test, but not the German immigration test abroad. Since 2011, DE's integration policies have taken 3 steps forward on integration, boosting DE's total MIPEX score by a significant +3 points. 

DE has taken the lead in Europe to facilitate and support the recognition of foreign qualifications and skills, thanks to its much-praised 2012 Recognition Act. Contrary to earlier assumptions, the labour market integration challenges for high-educated immigrants are not less than for low-educated, but different and, perhaps, even greater. Also since 2012, victims of racial profiling should have a clearer path to justice since a higher administrative court case confirmed that ID checks based on skin colour are unconstitutional in DE. In 2014, DE took the near-final step to embrace dual nationality for the 2nd generation born DE citizens since the 1999 landmark citizenship reform recognised that DE was a country of immigration. DE was the only country with such a restriction for the 2nd generation and is now the only major destination country not yet embracing dual nationality for all immigrants.

Conclusions and recommendations

DE has now entered the Top 10 on Integration Policy, just above the average for Western Europe. DE's overall score of 61/100 indicates that its policies slightly promote equal opportunities and a welcoming culture in DE. Increasingly, other countries of immigration in Europe and abroad are looking to Germany for inspiration on integration policy. In contrast, several neighbouring countries have either been blocked in their reform efforts (e.g. AT and CH) or pulled out of the Top Ten (e.g. NL and UK) by far-right parties often setting the agenda on integration. 

DE has had the right political, economic and social conditions to experiment, evaluate and expand new ambitious integration policies. DE's integration policies have benefited and arguably contributed to its rising employment rates and positive public attitudes towards immigrants. Placing a federal Commissioner at the Chancellery has made it easier to discuss integration and coordinate plans with different ministries, länder and cities (see also AU, NO, PT, recently US). BAMF's nationwide infrastructure guarantees that immigrants across the country can guarantee the same quality courses and new programmes (e.g. BME, JMD, MiMi, SprInt). Policymakers can use indicators to monitor integration, bust myths and design policies as well as several robust pilots and evaluations to assess and improve these policies' effects (see MIPEX review, Bilgili 2015).

Slow but steady progress still needs to be made on integration, with similar needs in DE as other European countries. Similar numbers in DE as across Europe are reportedly experiencing racial/ethnic or religious discrimination. Similar numbers of non-EU citizens are not in employment, education or training, stuck in jobs below their qualifications and separated from their non-EU families, while sizeable numbers are also eligible for long-term residence and DE citizenship. The gaps in some areas of life – adult and child education, political participation, family reunion – are even larger in DE than in most European countries. DE is one of few countries with a language test abroad, restrictions on dual nationality, limited healthcare entitlements for asylum-seekers and undocumented migrants, and a weak equality body and equality policy. These policies may be disproportionate and ineffective from an integration perspective, with many unintended consequences and negative long-term effects. The challenge is to expand access to the most effective general and targeted programmes and to pass new reforms from an integration perspective. An update of the National Action Plan Integration is scheduled for 2015.

Policy Recommendation from the Rat für Migration (Council for Migration)

  • Anti-discrimination policies and commitment against racism must be considered as integration policy and must be funded accordingly
  • We need to know the extent of social and institutional discrimination as well as hate crimes. Therefore comprehensive examinations and data collections are necessary. This matches recent demands by the United Nation to fulfill the requirements of the "International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination"
  • The inequality in education does not suit a wealthy country like Germany. Education policy must follow the principle of equivalence. The same lead should apply with health policy. It is unacceptable that Integration policy is discussed and governed without considering the central fields like education and health
  • Structurally weak municipalities, that bear high expenses for integration, must be provided with more financial and human resources
  • The same goes for groups in civil society, working in the fields Germany is inadequate (education, health and anti-discrimination), which must be strengthened
  • We need a clear shift away from the paradigm of control and national security concerning migration and integration. Integration policy should be the responsibility of departments which are not primarily dealing with national security policy

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POLICIES - SUMMARY

  • LABOUR MARKET MOBILITY

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 4 of 38
    • Potential Beneficiaries

      32%
    • Real Beneficiaries

      10%
  • FAMILY REUNION

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 24 of 38
    • Potential Beneficiaries

      6%
    • Outcome Indicators

      1
  • EDUCATION

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 16 of 38
    • Potential Beneficiaries

      13%
    • Real Beneficiaries

      56%
  • HEALTH

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 22 of 38
  • POLITICAL PARTICIPATION

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 11 of 38
    • Real Beneficiaries

      17%
    • Real Beneficiaries

      0%
  • PERMANENT RESIDENCE

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 19 of 38
    • Potential Beneficiaries

      66%
    • Outcome Indicators

      52%
  • ACCESS TO NATIONALITY

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 3 of 38
    • Potential Beneficiaries

      54%
    • Outcome Indicators

      2%
  • ANTI-DISCRIMINATION

    Score:

    Germany
    vs.
    MIPEX 38
    • 22 of 38
    • Potential Beneficiaries

      4%
    • Outcome Indicators

      4850

Labour Market Mobility

Key Findings

DE needs its strong labour market integration to improve employment rates for key groups (e.g. low-educated women) and get both high- and low-educated job-seekers into jobs with the right skill-level and a decent wage; currently effective programmes may be too new and small to reach the many non-EU citizen men and women in need, who rarely access training or benefits in DE

Potential Beneficiaries

How many immigrants could be employed?

Around 1/3 of working-age non-EU citizens are not in employment, education or training in DE, which is average for Europe (see lower rates around 20-25% in Nordics, NL, CH, UK). In DE, as across Europe, these rates are 2 times as high for women than men and 3 times as high for the low- than the high-educated. 

Policy Indicators

Do immigrants have equal rights and opportunities to access jobs and improve their skills?

Non-EU residents looking to pursue jobs and training now benefit from near-equal rights and strong support to pursue jobs and training in DE, ranking 4th alongside CA and Nordics. Since 2012, immigrants benefit from reforms of the procedures to recognise their academic and professional qualifications and skills (+11 points on labour market mobility). Government integration plans have produced local/regional initatives and federal integration courses and employment programmes across the country. Immigrants can participate in a wider range of targeted support in DE than in few other countries (i.e. Nordics). A number of these programmes can clearly demonstrate thier impact, as they are well-designed through pilots/experiments and then evaluated with robust methods. 

The challenge for DE is to expand access to the most effective programmes and make these best practices into a core part of the integration offer for all newcomers. Most immigrants with foreign qualifications or work experience could use a certification of these skills through recognition, bridging programmes or new DE degree, all of which boost employment outcomes. Thesse policies must also target non-labour migrants (refugees, spouses, students) and all  major sectors of employment for men and women (including the public sector and all regulated professions).

Dimension 1: Access to labour market

  • Most non-EU newcomers have the immediate right to work in all sectors except the public sector
  • This right is delayed for certain categories of labour migrants who may then end up stuck in the wrong job or career for several years before becoming long-term residents (see instead FI, IT/PT/ES)
  • Qualified newcomers who cannot contribute to the public sector unless for ‘urgent official needs’ (full access in 15 countries, e.g. Nordics, NL, UK, CA/NZ/US)

Dimension 2: Access to general support

  • Immigrants enjoy favourable general support to pursue jobs and training since 2012 (+33 points on general support) with passage of the Recognition Act (see box)
  • Labour migrants can be granted access to vocational training, with equal access enjoyed by other categories of newcomers
  • Newcomers would have to pursue education and training with access to the same study grants available to DE citizens and long-term residence (see instead NO and Southern Europe)

Dimension 3: Targeted support

  • Targeted support is the major area of strength in DE, unlike in most countries; general services are better able to address the specific needs of the foreign-trained, very low-educated, young arrivals and migrant women
  • Since 2012, immigrants can get information on recognition procedures through one-stop-shops, advice services (IQ-Network), hotlines and websites (+10 points on targeted support)
  • They get information on working in DE and their rights through the Migration Advisory Service for adult immigrants (MBE), youth (JMD) and federal integration courses since 2005 as well as federal employment services and trade unions 
  • In addition to the federal integration courses, BAMF now offers 'DE for professional purposes', combining job-specific language training, site visits and work placements
  • 'Wir Sind Bund' campaign offers federal public sector apprenticeships in 130 occupations, including the aim to improve cultural diversity and a welcoming culture
  • Several länder also want a more representative public sector by reaching out to people with a migrant background (e.g. Berlin needs you!)

Dimension 4: Workers' rights

  • DE and non-EU citizens should enjoy equal working conditions and equal rights as workers
  • Workers in need are generally guaranteed equal rights and benefits (e.g. income and housing support)
  • Equal rights are also the norm in 6 other leading countries (CA and Northern Europe) and, with just a few gaps, in 6 others

Policy Box

The Assessment and Recognition of Foreign Professional Qualifications Act aimed to standardise the procedures and criteria, at least for professions regulated by federal law. Before procedures could be missing or complicated and time-consuming, requiring co-operation between länder and professional organisations.  The Act was motivated by DE's forecasted demographic changes and labour market shortages for skilled workers. 

Skilled and educated people who intend to work in DE, both residents and persons abroad, have the right to a review of the equivalency of their foreign professional qualifications. One-stop-shops can now inform applicants and receive their applications for academic qualifications (ZAB), 
professional/vocational qualifications (IHK FOSA) and regulated professions (state contact points). 
Applicants can also receive information and advice from the IQ-network 'Integration durch Qualifizierung' and new hotlines and web portals (www.anerkennung-in-deutschland.de). The procedure is free for people living on unemployment or social benefits. Where formal certificates are missing, work experience is taken into account. 

At the end of process, applicants obtain a positive explanatory statement and, if successful, a certificate of equivalence. Applicants obtaining a partial or non-recognition will then need bridging or retraining programmes, which are under development in DE. 

Real beneficiaries

Are immigrants acquiring new skills?

Non-EU citizen men and women rarely participate in education and training DE, according to 2011/2 data. Just 10% reported recently participating in education and training in DE, similarly as in AT and FR. This level of lifelong learning is slightly below the European average (around 17%) and far below countries with high equitable levels, such as the Nordics, NL and UK. The uptake of education and training are much lower for low-educated men and women (3% in DE, also low in AT, CH, FR).

Very few unemployed non-EU citizens looking for jobs can count on the support of unemployment benefits. Only 10% of recently unemployed non-EU women and 13% of men reported receiving any unemployment benefit. Unemployed non-EU citizens were less likely to receive unemployment benefits in DE than in 16 of the 19 European countries with adequate data, far below the high rates in AT, FI, FR, CH.

Contextual factors

What other factors explain whether immigrants find skilled and well-paid jobs?

  • Comparatively high overall employment rate and ≥2% average GDP growth (similar to CH, AU, CA, NZ, US)
  • Slightly more rigid employment protection legislation than average in OECD
  • Few recent temporary work or study permits among non-EU residents in DE (similar to AT and 
  • Few non-EU immigrants obtain their highest degree from DE
  • Limited exposure to DE language is possible before migration

Outcome indicators

Are immigrants employed in qualified and well-paid jobs?

Gender equality and job quality are two issues for long-term labour market integration in DE. Labour market integration does generally occur over time in DE as in most European countries, according to 2011/2 data. Among the long-settled non-EU-born (10+ years' stay), the high-educated are just 10% less likely to have jobs than non-immigrants with the same level of education. For the low-educated, long-settled non-EU-born men are slightly more likely to have jobs than DE-born men with low levels of education. However, employment rates are lower for non-EU-born women than for DE-born women, whether comparing the high-educated (13% less likely to have jobs) or low-educated (25% less likely). 

In terms of job quality, long-settled non-EU-born workers with tertiary education are over 2 times as likely to work in jobs below the level of their qualification. In other words, 'brain waste' affects around 1/3 of long-settled non-EU-born workers with tertiary education, compared to just 14% of high-educated DE-born workers. These gaps in job quality for the high-educated are a common problem across countries. Among low-educated workers, 23-26% of long-settled non-EU-born women and men experience in-work poverty, with wages and benefits below the level of their basic needs. This rate is only 50% higher than for the DE-born, as low-educated workers are generally more likely to experience in-work poverty in DE than in other countries (equally high levels in CH, Southern and Central Europe).

Evidence base

What do we learn from robust studies?

Robust causal evaluations (see references in Bilgili 2015) have found that immigrants also benefit from the most effective programmes to get the unemployed into jobs: short-term subsidised vocational training (Bernhard and Kruppe 2012, Wolff and Eva Jozwiak 2007, Aldashev et al. 2010), unemployment benefits with means-testing (Bernhard and Kruppe 2012 and Wolff and Eva Jozwiak 2007) and binding conditions (Walter 2013), targeted private-sector wage subsidies (Bernard et al. 2008), job-related language training (Deeke 2009), vocational job orientation camps for youth (Kölling 2011), new business start-up subsidies (Wolff and Nivorozhkin 2008 and Caliendo and Künn 2010).

Family Reunion

Key Findings

Reunited families obtain the slightly secure status, equal rights and integration courses that improve their integration in DE; Non-EU families are less likely to reunite in DE than in most countries; DE delays and restricts eligibility more than most, while also demanding but not supporting spouses to learn DE abroad 

Potential Beneficiaries

How many immigrants are potentially living in transnational couples?

6% of non-EU citizen adults in DE were not living with their spouse or partner, according to 2011/2 estimates. This is a much higher level of 'living apart together' than for DE citizens. These non-EU citizens are likely living in internationally separated couples and thus potential sponsors for family reunion. In other European countries, >5% of non-EU citizen adults were affected BE, CY, GR, IT, ES, BE and SI. 

Policy Indicators

How easily can immigrants reunite with family?

DE's family reunion policy is slightly more restrictive than 23 out of the 38 countries, much like GR or NL. As in most countries, reunited families enjoy a slightly secure status and equal rights as their sponsor, with a few gaps in law for vulnerable family members to stay in DE independently. What DE requires of non-EU families to reunite together is largely the same as most countries, with the major exception of the DE test abroad. The other major weakness are the delays and definition of the family, with DE's eligibility rules ranked 34th, with only CY, DK and UK more restrictive. 

2014 guidelines by the European Commission recommend to remove these delays and provide more flexible alternatives to tests and age limits.

Dimension 1: Eligibility

  • DE delays and restricts family reunion more than most countries; the approach both discourages sponsors from investing in their integration and limits the prospects of integration for children and spouses.
  • The delays for family reunion depend on the family member and can reach 2 years (maximum 1 year in 10 countries and immediately in 14)
  • Sponsors wait different periods for different family members, some much longer than in most countries (e.g. only 8 require 2 years’ residence or more)
  • Sponsors are reunited with spouses or homosexual partners (as in now 26) once becoming adults at 18 (as in 30 countries)
  • DE is one of only 3 other countries (CY, DK, CH) that judge minor children by the standards of adults; to reunite, children ages 16-17 must prove their 'ability to integrate'
  • Adult children/parents may be dependent on their sponsor, but can only reunite with them in discretionary cases of 'exceptional hardship' (more objective definitions of dependency in 25 of the 38 countries)

Dimension 2: Conditions

  • Sponsors must pay a standard fee (100-110€) and generally prove a basic legal income and housing based on DE's minimum standards needed and required of all families in DE, although local variation and discretion can occur
  • DE language courses may too expensive and inaccessible for spouses abroad in certain countries and circumstances to pass the required pre-entry language test (see box)
  • Afterwards, reunited family members in DE are 'demanded and supported' to master DE and basic facts about the country (see box) 

Dimension 3: Security of status

  • If the average conditions are met, families have a relatively secure future in DE, as in most other countries
  • Decisions should be relatively quick and provide enough information to launch an appeal if necessary
  • Applicants are not always guaranteed a residence status as long and secure as their sponsor's
  • Refusals or withdrawals must be justified and take into account the impact on the applicant's personal and family life, as in most countries

Dimension 4: Rights associated

  • Reunited adult family members enjoy the same rights as their sponsor to participate in society in DE, as in most countries 
  • Their right to stay in DE independently of their sponsor contains obstacles for several types of families
  • They are not entitled to stay unless they live together in DE with their sponsor for 3 years for spouses and 5 years for children (similar periods in 11 other countries, 3 years or less for all in 11 others) 
  • Authorities must make exceptions in case of death and in 'hardship' cases; immigration law provides less clear protections in cases of divorce/separation and emotional or physical violence see instead AU, CA, NO, NZ, PT, ES)

Policy Box

In 2007, DE became the 2nd country to follow the NL and require a pre-entry language test. Nearly one decade later, only 5 other countries saw fit to introduce such a test (AT, FR, KR, UK and post-entry in DK). These tests are also rarely likely to be effective at boosting language and integration outcomes, since courses abroad are often expensive, inaccessible and low-quality. The requirements were only slightly favourable for language learning in FR and KR. Both countries provide free pre-departure courses with exemptions in cases of vulnerability and inaccessibility. Legal exemptions in KR reflect that this language rule is disproportionate for couples with children, another common language, or several years of residence/marriage together. For FR, families have to take, but not necessarily pass, a course and/or test. Those who cannot access or pass the requirement abroad must take longer courses in FR. Similarly for NZ, the family of skilled workers must either pass a paid test abroad or pre-pay for their language tuition in NZ.

A few other countries are trying innovative incentives rather than sanctions for families abroad. CA find it more effective to make pre-departure programmes voluntary (CIIP, COA) and focus instead on informing families' choices about their future lives and careers in CA. DK offers an online DK curriculum, while the CA province of QC reimbourses immigrants who successfully complete FR courses abroad.

The most innovative methods are used within DE, where language training has proven more effective and accessible for resident families. Upon arrival in DE, families must complete the integration and extensive DE course and, since 2007, pass a higher fluency test than in any other country (B1 in DE, A2 in 6 out of the 10 others with tests e.g. AT, BE, DK, IT, NL, NO). A few countries take a more personalised approach by setting individual goals/levels and rewarding effort/progress (AU, FI, NO, SE, previous UK). In DE, learners are supported to succeed through study materials clear exemptions and, most importantly, federally-funded courses that are guaranteed across the country, low-cost/free, flexible/adapted to their needs, as is common in Northern Europe and traditional countries of immigration. For example, several types of family-oriented courses have been piloted in DE as well as AT, FI, NO, AU/CA/NZ/US. 

Real beneficiaries

Are families reuniting?

40,000-43,000 family members were reunited with their non-EU sponsor in DE in 2012 and 2013. As the number of newcomers has increased in DE, so too have the number of family reunions. The number of non-EU families reuniting in DE increased by around 50-60%, from 25,000-30,000 in previous years (2008-2011). This rise is not due to any particular group, as numbers increased for all types of families and nationalities, especially from refugee-producing countries (e.g. AF, RS, SO, SY). Family migrants still makes up the same proportion of newcomers as before, accounting for 43% of 1st permits between 2008-2013. 

Newcomer families are very diverse, coming from all over the globe. The top 10 largest nationalities reuniting in DE account for just around half of reuniting families (TU, KS, IN, RS, RU, CN, US, JP, VN). The composition of reuniting families hardly changes from year-to-year. Family reunion is mostly about children. Between 2008-2013, 57% of reuniting non-EU family members were children. Besides spouses/partners and children, hardly any other family members reunite with a non-EU sponsor (just 1% from 2008-2013).

Contextual factors

What other factors explain whether immigrants reunite with family?

  • Recent rise in newcomers who may wish to settle in DE
  • Increasing share of humanitarian migrants likely to stay and need family reunion 
  • Increasing share of humanitarian migrants likely to stay and need family reunion 

Outcome indicators

How often do immigrants reunite with family?

Non-EU family reunion is relatively rare in the EU and even rarer in DE today. Out of every 100 non-EU residents in the average EU country, only 2.2 are newly arrived non-EU family members. For DE, that rate is around 1 newly arrived non-EU family member for every 100 non-EU residents in DE. This rate doubled from around 0.5 from 2008-2010. Even so, non-EU families seem less likely to reunite in DE than in nearly all other European countries, with non-EU family reunion rates only lower in EE, IE, LV and MT. DE's rate is lower than in other similar countries where 2/3 of non-EU citizens are long-settled, such as BE (2.8), LU (3.3), UK (2.9). These findings raise concerns that newcomers are some of DE's relatively restrictive rules and requirements may delay or deter newcomers' family reunion and their integration. Non-EU family reunion is very rare in countries with restrictive policies, such as CY, EE, IE, MT and, to some extent, DE, AT, GR and LV. olicies can quickly function as obstacles to the right to family reunion, with disproportionate effects on the most vulnerable groups.

Evidence base

What do we learn from robust studies?

Government and academic evaluations in DE and NL found that high-quality courses and information sessions in countries of origin often improved spouses' preparation for their life in their new country. While spouses are significantly more likely to pass the test when attending high-quality courses like the Goethe Institute's, most have not attended these courses as they can be inaccessible in certain countries and remote regions and for learners with certain educational/linguistic backgrounds and work/family responsibilities. Pre-entry language tests and requirements have only marginal effects on language learning, since the little that spouses can reasonably learn abroad is not enough to get by in DE. These marginal effects are also not very sustainable as spouses can quickly forget the little they learn after months of waiting for their decision, visa and immigration. Preparing for and passing the pre-entry test also has little-to-no effect on their likelihood to pursue employment or further education (see summary and links in Huddleston and Pedersen 2011). 

Education

Key Findings

The needs in DE are great to expand targeted and general policies on equal opportunities in education since major achievement gaps persist for 1st and 2nd generation pupils, who are overly concentrated in disadvantaged schools

Potential Beneficiaries

How many pupils have immigrant parents?

Among 15-year-olds taking the PISA test in DE, a sizeable proportion are 2nd generation born in DE to immigrant parents (estimation of 13.4%). The size of DE's 2nd generation is comparable to Europe's other well-established countries of immigration, such as AT, FR, SE. Their needs are different than foreign-born pupils who may arrive in DE after the start of compulsory education. An estimated 42% of 1st/2nd generation 15-year-olds are non-native DE speakers because their parents speak with them at home in another language. 

Policy Indicators

Is the education system responsive to the needs of the children of immigrants?

Targeted support is uneven across DE's länder and various school types and tracks and generally weaker than in Nordics and traditional countries of immigration. The trends in DE's approach to migrant education are ranked 16th alongside AT and CH. Through federal and state standards, DE has gone halfway to address immigrant pupils' specific needs and opportunities at all school levels. DE's federal and state governments are slow to support and require schools to target needs, promote social integration and implement intercultural education. DE länder do slightly less than most other countries to require that schools target these needs through basic information, limited language support and optional trainings (ranked 20th). But they do more than most to facilitate access to DE's various school types and tracks (10th) and to promote new opportunities through support to immigrant languages, parents and teachers (5th). Authorities provide few guidelines and ad hoc support for schools to implement an intercultural approach across the curriculum. 

Projects, entirely dependent on funding and political will, only address their needs in some schools or for some part of their school career. Well-evaluated projects can be turned into entitlements. Several other federal/decentralised countries (e.g. SE, US) have agreed entitlements for any migrant pupil with specific needs, while states and municipalities decide how to address them.

Dimension 1: Access

  • Ranking 10th, DE federal and state programmes mostly ecnourage immigrant pupils to access pre-primary and vocational education and avoid early school leaving (similar work done in Western Europe and traditional countries of immigration)
  • Some immigrant pupils may benefit from state initiatives in pre-primary (e.g. HIPPY, early DE support), compulsory education (e.g. all-day schooling), vocational training and apprenticeships (e.g. KAUSA, Jugend Stӓrken) and, to a lesser extent, higher education, supplemented by projects by foundations and public-private partnerships
  • Despite the focus on access, newcomer pupils arriving after compulsory school age may be placed in the wrong year or level because expert institutions (see FR, LU) do not assess all they learned abroad
  • Not all pupils actually living in the country can access education, since children with undocumented parents do not have equal access to vocational or higher education (access to some level of higher education in 15 other countries and to all in 6, e.g. FR, NL)

Dimension 2: Targeting needs

  • Like AT, CH and IE, DE has not developed requirements, standards or clear trends on how schools should address immigrant pupils' specific needs (see instead strong policies in traditional countries of immigration, Nordics, EE)
  • Authorities can use good data on performance to design targeted support 
  • In DE as in most major destinations, immigrant pupils and parents can be informed in a language they understand about how the education system works 
  • Pupils in pre-primary and compulsory education usually receive support to learn enough basic DE to follow the regular instruction, but rarely additional continuous support to attain academic fluency 
  • Schools benefit from general funding for disadvantaged pupils and, in some states, additional resources to build their capacity to address immigrant pupils' specific needs
  • Increasingly new teachers learn about these topics in pre-service training

Dimension 3: New opportunities

  • Increasingly immigrant pupils, parents and teachers in DE can benefit from initiatives recognising their untapped skills for the education system
  • DE started to address an area of weakness across countries (see also Nordics and traditional countries of immigration)
  • Recent campaigns and networks encourage people with a migrant background to become teachers (e.g. Mehr Migranten werden Lehrer, networks in Bavaria, NRW, Berlin, Hamburg, Hesse)
  • Immigrant parents across DE can increasingly participate in targeted school outreach and learning activities (e.g. Frühstart and HIPPY in kindergarten, Rucksack in primary school, Mama learnt Deutsch in compulsory schools)
  • Like most countries, DE authorities recommend that schools teach immigrant languages and this happens in many ways, in and outside classroom and sometimes to all pupils 
  • The curriculum does teach all pupils to appreciate cultural diversity, but rarely the specific immigrant cultures in Germany
  • Few measures are promoting mixed schools/classrooms and curricular or extra-curricular activities, despite ad hoc reports on the school segregation of immigrant pupils
  • No nation-wide systematic monitoring of educational segregation

Dimension 4: Intercultural education

  • In nearly all countries, including DE, schools are supposed to teach the appreciation of cultural diversity across the curriculum 
  • Schools receive slightly weak guidance and support on implementing intercultural education, with DE generally below average for Western Europe, though several countries are just as weak (e.g. FI, IT, ES, CH)
  • States provide ad hoc funding for public diversity initiatives and new teachers are increasingly exposed to intercultural approaches in pre-service training
  • Countries such as AU, BE, CA, LU, NO, NL, NZ, NO, PT, UK are changing and monitoring the curriculum for intercultural education

Real beneficiaries

Are pupils with limited literacy getting remedial courses?

According to the 2012 OECD PISA, a slight majority of low-literacy 1st generation surveyed were participating in extra out-of-school literacy courses. This level of additional literacy support (general or targeted) is average for the OECD countries. This is comparable to levels in several EN-speaking countries (IE, UK, AU, NZ) and other European countries (NL, NO, GR, IT), but behind the higher levels (>60%) in DK/FI/SE, PT and CA/US. However 2nd generation or non-immigrant pupils with low-literacy scores are much less likely to participate in out-of-school literacy courses (36% and 30% respectively). Similar patterns (high for low-literary 1st generation, low for other low-literacy pupils) emerge in AT, CH, NL, NO, GR, AU, CA.

Contextual factors

What other factors explain whether the children of immigrants excel at school?

  • >50% of immigrant pupils with low-educated mothers are concentrated in disadvantaged schools, much more often than for non-immigrant pupils 
  • 60% of 1st/2nd generation speak DE at home 
  • Few foreign-born pupils arrive after age 12 

 

Outcome indicators

How well are the children of immigrants achieving at school?

From one generation to the next, more pupils with an immigrant background seem to benefit from equal opportunities in education, but the gaps with non-immigrant DE pupils are still some of the largest in the developed world. By age 15, only around 20% of non-immigrant pupils with low-educated DE mothers scored as math low-achievers on the 2012 PISA test. This level of low math achievement among disadvantaged pupils is one of the lowest in the developed world, alongside CH (14%), NL (16%), FI (17%) and DK (22%). In contrast, in DE, 58% of 1st generation pupilswith low-educated mothers were math low-achievers. 2nd generation pupils with low-educated mothers score halfway in between, with 37% estimated to be math low-achievers. This means the 2nd generation born in DE to low-educated immigrant mothers is still twice as likely to be math achievers than pupils with low-educated DE mothers. This gap is one of the largest internationally, alongside AT, CH, NL, DK, FI, and NO. This situation suggests that the most effective targeted or general policies will have to be expanded to match the large level of need for DE's sizeable 2nd generation, particularly those in schools and programmes with mostly disadvantaged pupils.

Evidence base

What do we learn from robust studies?

A number of evaluations with experimental designs have identified projects and programmes boosting educational outcomes for immigrant pupils. Participation in pre-primary education appears to be highly effective for boosting the academic outcomes for migrant pupils, while compensatory programmes in primary school seem less effective (Becker and Beck 2011). Evaluations of the 20-week 'Hören, Lauschen, Lernen' programme (Gräsel et al. 2004, Weber et al. 2007) and 'Sag' mal was' programme (Gasteiger-Klicpera et al. 2010) seem to have positive effects on the phonological awareness for pre-primary-age immigrant pupils. That said, pre-primary language programmes are not always found to be effective (Hofmann 2008, Sachse et al. 2012). A full-day school model (Steg project) had some positive effects on social behaviour, motivation and school performance particularly for immigrant pupils (Fischer et al. 2010). Free school choice for parents in a major NRW city found that this system increased parental choices, mostly for advantaged families, but with inconclusive effects on segregation (Schneider et al. 2012). Summer camps using theatre to explicitly and implicitly build DE language skills had significant long-term effects for the reading outcomes of third-graders (Stanat et al. 2012). 

Health

Key Findings

While healthcare services are improving their ability to respond to migrant patients' specific needs, state and federal policies are still underdeveloped and restrict entitlements, information and access, especially for undocumented migrants and asylum-seekers

Policy Indicators

Is the health system responsive to immigrants' needs?

Migrant health policy – a new area of investigation in MIPEX in 2014 – are only halfway favourable from an integration perspective, with DE ranking 22nd below average compared to other countries with just as high GDPs and immigrant populations. Federal leadership and new plans coming in 2015 may improve this slight area of strength in 2015, as the Integration Commissioner declared this 'the year of migration and health.' 

Click here to learn more about how MIPEX health was developed with IOM and EU’s COST/ADAPT network through ‘Equi-Health’ project and co-funded by European Commission’s DG SANTE. 

Dimension 1: Entitlements

  • Healthcare entitlements is only halfway favourable for migrants in DE, with full coverage for legal migrants and greater legal and administrative barriers for asylum-seekers and undocumented migrants (see instead near-equal entitlements in FR, NL, SE, CH)
  • With few exceptions, asylum-seekers and undocumented patients face weaker entitlements and greater problems with documentation and discretion
  • Legal migrants are covered by the same risk-sharing system for healthcare costs as DE citizens (similar to BE, FR, NL, SE, CH)
  • The majority of asylum-seekers are entitled to very limited access to healthcare during their 1st 15 months in DE, unless they find a job (access allowed after 3rd month but limited until 15th for those without a DE or recognised academic qualification)
  • Asylum-seekers receive health cards granting equal entitlements in Bremen since 2005 and Hamburg since 2012 (entitlements are virtually equal in FR and TU and near-equal in AT)
  • Undocumented migrants should at least receive emergency care and a midwife for pregnancy and childbirth, but conflicts with immigration law can mean that individuals or charities must bare the full costs 

Dimension 2: Access policies

  • In general, migrant patients receive less support to access services in DE than in nearly all countries
  • DE's policies on information and access rank 33rd as weak as GR, HU and TU and only stronger than BG, HR, LV, SI
  • Promising initiatives (like MiMi and Sprint) were spreading across DE but not turned yet into systematic policies 
  • Migrants receive information on their entitlements and health issues in limited ways and languages (e.g. DE, EN, RU)
  • Cultural mediators are only available ad hoc through often local voluntary initiatives (see instead 18 other countries)
  • DE and HR are the only 2 of the 38 countries where physicians and staff face both reporting obligations and real threats of punishment for treating undocumented migrants for anything but emergency care (this was allowed in 2010) 

Dimension 3: Responsive services

  • Despite official restrictions on entitlements and access, healthcare services in DE are improving how they identify and treat their specific health/access problems
  • Patients and healthcare professionals can communicate through interpreters in migrant-rich areas, though they face issues of availability, quality and financial responsibility (see clearer policies in EN-speaking countries, AT, BE, NO, SE, CH)
  • DE healthcare services are the 7th most active on improving their responsiveness (alongside IE, NO, SE and slightly behind AT, CH and other EN-speaking countries)
  • Services are not yet trained, required and monitored on cultural competence, although several standards now exist in DE
  • Several specialised centres are working to develop methods to treat specific migrant health concerns (e.g. PTSD, torture, FGM, transcultural psychiatry see DTPPP)
  • Projects rather than policies to reach out to migrants in DE for feedback (e.g. MiMi project) or recruitment (e.g. Turkish-German-Health-Foundation)

Dimension 4: Mechanisms for change

  • The response from health policies has been weak to date (see leading migrant health policies in NO and EN-speaking countries)
  • Policymakers discuss these issues ad hoc with migrant and health stakeholders
  • Migrant health policies remain underdeveloped in even the DE states with large immigrant populations
  • Some statistical data and an increasing body of research can serve as a foundation for migrant health policy

Political Participation

Key Findings

DE's proactive policies to support and consult immigrant civil society may not be enough to avoid the long-term risk that DE becomes an ageing and shrinkin democracy, unless greater action is taken on naturalisation and/or voting rights

Potential Beneficiaries

Who are disenfranchised from voting?

DE is the EU country with the largest population of disenfranchised non-EU citizens. Based on 2014 Eurostat data, an estimated 3.5 million non-EU citizen adults (aged 15+) are disenfranchised in DE elections. That's 5% of the total adult population in DE or equivalent to the  size of the population of Berlin, DE's largest city.

Policy Indicators

Do immigrants have comparable rights and opportunities to participate in political life?

Ranking 11th, DE, like most established immigration countries, provides newcomers some political opportunities, but few in democratic or national politics. DE's proactive policies to support and consult immigrant civil society may not be enough to avoid the long-term risk that DE becomes an ageing and shrinking democracy, with non-EU residents politically excluded or disengaged. In response to the millions of disenfranchised non-EU citizen adults, DE has taken no action on voting rights, while the naturalisation rate is still below-average.

Dimension 1: Electoral rights

  • No action on local voting rights for non-EU citizens since 1990 (granted in 15 EU countries and 6 more within MIPEX)
  • Voting rights are long faught and hard won, but then even harder to revoke (debates ongoing in CZ, GR, IT, FR, LU, PL, US) 

Dimension 2: Political liberties

  • Non-EU citizens enjoy individual political liberties, including the right to join parties, as in all Western European countries

Dimension 3: Consultative bodies

  • Immigrants can inform and improve policies through a strong and independent consultative body in many DE cities and states, though not yet at the national level
  • These local and regional bodies are often immigrant-elected and led, with the right to their own initative and, sometimes, to a government response
  • These bodies could serve as models for a future immigrant consultative body building on the 2011 government-appointed, led and dependent advisory board of the Federal Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration (see also national bodies in DK and FI and regional body in BE VL)

Dimension 4: Implementation policies

  • Immigrants enjoy civil society support to represent their interests, as in 26 other countries
  • They can also receive ad hoc information about how to become civically and politically active
  • 10 national migrant NGOs, including one for migrant women (DaMigra) received funding though a new BAMF programme starting in 2014

Real beneficiaries

How many non-EU immigrants are eligible to vote?

With no voting rights and comparative low naturalisation rates for non-EU citizens, DE emerges as one of the most politically exclusive countries of immigration, alongside countries such as AT, IT, CH and Southeast Europe. 

Contextual factors

What other factors explain whether immigrants become politically active?

  • Many from highly developed countries 
  • Generally high levels of civic engagement in DE
  • Most long-settled in Northwest Europe 
  • Sizeable number of humanitarian migrants more likely to become civically active in the long-term

Outcome indicators

Are immigrants participating in political life?

Long-settled non-EU-born are half as likely to participate politically than DE-born citizens, with larger gaps in DE than in most countries. European Social Survey data from the 2000s suggested that 2/3 of the university-educated DE-born and 1/3 of the low-educated DE-born regularly take part in a political party, association, petition, demonstration or contacting a politician. The level of political participation among long-settled non-EU-born (10+ years' stay) was just 44% for the university-educated and 20% for the low-educated. This is one of the widest gaps in Europe (simialr to AT, CH, EE) and persists whether comparing the university-educated or the low-educated.

Permanent Residence

Key Findings

The security of permanent residence and equal rights may be fundamental for non-EU citizens to secure better integration outcomes; Most immigrants are long enough settled to apply—and most have, but DE's relatively restrictive requirements may demand more than they support

Potential Beneficiaries

Who can become long-term residents?

Around 2/3 of non-EU immigrants in DE have lived there long enough to become long-term residents, according to 2011/2 estimates. Such long-settled immigrant communities are common across Europe. 2/3 represents the slightly lower level found in countries with many newcomers (e.g. BE, IE, UK).

Policy Indicators

How easily can immigrants become long-term residents?

Non-EU citizens face a more demanding path in DE to obtain the same status and rights as in most other European countries. Due to EU law, DE and other EU countries implemented many of the same eligibility rules, procedures and rights for national and EU long-term residents. The major difference is that DE demands that non-EU citizens be more fluent and more economically self-sufficient than on average These relatively restrictive requirements may be more demanding than supporting integration if targeted employment and integration support are still not successfully reaching their targets. Income and language requirements could be more realistic and flexible based on immigrants' individual progress and efforts.

Dimension 1: Eligibility

  • Most—but not all—temporary residents have the right to become permanent residents after 5 years in DE and most EU countries
  • Only 3 years is required for spouses/partners of DE citizens (shorter schemes for all non-EU citizens in HU, Nordics)
  • While students cannot apply directly for long-term residents, they can count half their time studying if they switch to another permit (see more favourable provisions in DK, JP, KR, SE, CH, TU)

Dimension 2: Conditions

  • DE requirements are slightly unfavourable more restrictive than on average, ranking 26th out of 38, alongside AT and FR
  • Non-EU citizens cannot become long-term residents if they cannot pass through requirements as difficult as for DE citizenship
  • Only 6 other countries set the benchmark for success so explicitly high (B1, e.g. AT, EE, GR, UK)
  • Most other countries just prove residents to have any basic legal income (26), basic language knowledge (8 A2, 2 A1 and 3 only course-attendance) without integration tests (23 with none)

Dimension 3: Security of status

  • Successful long-term residents can be relatively secure about their future in DE, with similar protections as in most of Northern European countries
  • They obtain a permanent status for their entire life in DE, as in 26 other countries
  • They can live/work abroad for long periods after 15 years' living in DE
  • A few long-term residents can lose their status, such as very serious offenses
  • In these expulsion cases, authorities should take into account their net effective links to DE and the effects on their personal and family life

Dimension 4: Rights Associated

  • Long-term residents can work, study and live in the country with the same social and economic rights as citizens enjoy in DE and in 29 other countries

Real beneficiaries

How many immigrants are long-term residents?

2,417,373 non-EU citizens were settled in DE as long-term residents in 2013, according to DE national statistics. As the largest country of immigration in Europe, DE is also home to the most long-term residents, just ahead of IT (2.2 million), FR (1.8 million), ES (1.8 million) and UK (1.6 million).

Outcome indicators

How often do immigrants become long-term residents?

Although an estimated 2/3 of non-EU citizens in DE have lived there for 5+ years, only an estimated 1/2 have become long-term residents, according to 2013 data. This level is similar to AT but slightly below the 2/3 majority in most other major destinations (FR, IT, ES, SE, UK). The number of long-term residents strongly reflects countries' path to  residence and citizenship. Most settled non-EU citizens in DE have benefited from the clear path and integration support to learn DE and secure their future in the country. Still countries like DE with restrictive requirements may also end up with important numbers of 'permanently temporary' residents who are denied the secure and equal rights that could help them better participate in society. 

Access to Nationality

Key Findings

DE can encourage rapid integration through a shorter path to dual nationality, all without changing what it takes to become DE citizens

Potential Beneficiaries

Who can become a citizen?

Only around 1/2 of long-settled non-EU citizen men and women (10+ years' residence) had become DE citizens by 2011/2.

Policy Indicators

How easily can immigrants become citizens?

Since 1999, permanent residents face a clear but demanding path to DE citizenship. They also receive the support they need to succeed as new citizens through affordable courses and promotional materials. Slowly but surely, DE's citizenship laws are opening up to its reality as a country of immigration. However, DE is the last major destination country still enforcing a general ban on dual nationality (only minor destinations like AT, NL, NO). Many non-EU citizens meeting all the requirements do not apply because they would lose their origin citizenship.

Dimension 1: Eligibility

  • DE's eligibility rules are favourable for a country of immigration
  • In 1999, DE set the example for citizenship entitlements for children born in the country, later followed by FI, IS, NO, PT, LU, GR, CZ and DK (18 MIPEX countries total)
  • Permanent residents who meet the requirements must wait slightly longer to apply (8 or exceptionally 7 years) than in most major destination countries (5 years most common)

Dimension 2: Conditions

  • The requirements to become a DE citizen are halfway favourable for recognising and encouraging immigrants' integration
  • Most applicants can successfully learn the required high-level German (B1) and legal/civic knowledge through the guaranteed 1€-per-hour courses, practice tests, study guides and the necessary exemptions for the German-educated, minors, elderly and disabled/ill
  • Applicants pay an average fee (255€), but also face a complicated income requirement, which makes DE citizenship conditional upon a person's income and employment situation (unlike AU, CA, NZ, US and most Nordic countries)

Dimension 3: Security of status

  • The procedure itself is also halfway favourable for applicants, depending on the länder
  • Those meeting all the legal requirements are entitled to become DE citizens (as in most Northern European countries)
  • Those rejected can learn why and appeal, while those accepted enjoy a fairly secure status
  • Creating a legal time limit for the procedure could guarantee that authorities avoid delays and properly allocate resources (see limits BE, NL, LU and recently PL and targets in Nordic countries).

Dimension 4: Dual nationality

  • Despite the general rule against dual nationality, DE makes so many exceptions and dual nationality is now accepted in so many other destination countries (25 MIPEX countries, most recently CZ and DK)
  • Dual nationality is allowed since 2014 for children born and schooled in DE and, since 2007, for EU & CH citizens, for refugees, for old people facing hardship, for people losing economic or property disadvantages and for people from countries prohibiting, denying or delaying renunciation
  • Those not exempt are likely discouraged from becoming DE citizens, as are some of those exempt, due to the complexity of the rules
  • Reforming countries find dual nationality hard to avoid, easier to regulate, and generally unrelated to integration, with few risks and many benefits (see recent reforms in FI, SE, LU, DK).

Policy Box

A 2006 Federal Constitutional Court’s ruling found that 5 years was sufficient for authorities to detect fraud or deceit after naturalisation. A 2007 law standardised the language requirements and new ‘citizenship’ test and support. The 'option duty' for ius soli children was reformed in 2014 as a grand coalition compromise. These children remain dual nationals at age 21, so long as they live in DE for 8 years, attend school there for 6 or obtain a DE school-leaving certificate.

Real beneficiaries

How many immigrants are becoming citizens?

The number of naturalisations per year has fallen over the past decade from around 140,000 in the early 2000s to around 100,000 in the 2010s. In 2012, 93,947 non-EU citizens became DE citizens, almost the same number of new citizens as in ES — a new country of immigration — and half the number as in the UK. Some 500,000 DE-born citizens, 'the option children', could benefit from the 2014 opening to dual nationality. Before its passage, 553 of them had been forced to lose their DE citizenship when turning age 23. Around half of applicants have been allowed to dual nationality since the 1999 reform. For the 1st time, census data shows that, in 2011, 4.3 million DE citizens had dual nationality, with PL (the largest), RU and TU nationals making up less than half of all DE dual nationals.

Contextual factors

What other factors explain why non-EU immigrants become citizens?

  • 2/3 long-settled in DE
  • Mostly humanitarian or family migrants likely to stay
  • 85% from countries allowing dual nationality 

Outcome indicators

How often do immigrants become citizens?

In recent years, non-EU citizen men and women have become slightly less likely to naturalise in DE (2 out of 100) than in the average European country (3.4), including most Western European countries, such as France (2.9), Netherlands (8.1) and the UK (7.5). Naturalisation rates are also slightly inequitable in DE. Rates are slightly lower than in other countries for non-EU women, elderly over 65 and nationals of certain refugee-producing countries.

Evidence base

What do we learn from robust studies?

Using variation created by the 1999 nationality reform, Avitabile et al. 2013 study the effect of children’s legal status on the integration of immigrant parents. The introduction of  jus soli results in a significant increase in the integration of adults. Parents of children affected by the reform are more likely to read DE newspapers and have social interactions with native DE citizens.

Anti-discrimination

Key Findings

DE's anti-discrimination laws are average for Europe, but its equality bodies and body are some of the weakest in the developed world; Similar numbers in DE and across Europe say they experience racial, ethnic or religious discrimination, but hardly any come forward with a complaint or case; Potential victims may be poorly informed and supported to take even the first step in the long path to justice

Potential Beneficiaries

Who said they experienced racial/ethnic or religious discrimination last year?

Similar numbers in DE and across Europe say they recently experienced racial/ethnic or religious discrimination. The latest comparable EU data (2012) found that 4.4% of people in DE felt that in the past year they were discriminated against or harassed based on their ethnic origin (2.7%) and/or religion (2.1%). These rates match the EU-wide average and countries such as NL, FI, Baltics.

Policy Indicators

Is everyone effectively protected from racial/ethnic, religious, and nationality discrimination in all areas of life?

Victims of discrimination face greater obstacles to access justice in DE than on average in Western Europe, with DE ranked 22nd alongside AT. DE's anti-discrimination law (AGG) and equality body (ADS) are young, required by 2000 EU directives and adopted only in 2006 after years of intense debate). The law itself provides potential victims with average path to justice for Western Europe. The legal framework has continued to improve over time across the EU, including in DE in 2008 (+2) and 2012 (+2). DE's laws may be ineffective against discrimination because potential victims do not get the support they need from one of the weakest equality bodies and policies in the developed world. These policies in DE appear as weak as in CZ and TU, with only greater weaknesses in IT, IS, JP. As a result, people experiencing various forms of discrimination are not properly informed or supported to report it or access justice.

Dimension 1: Definitions

  • Potential victims in DE can benefit from the same rather comprehensive definitions of discrimination that exist across Europe
  • Wide range of actors cannot discriminate against a person on the grounds of race, ethnicity or religion
  • The main law (AGG) clarifies that multiple discrimination must be justified on all grounds (see other definitions of this in 7 countries)
  • Non-EU citizens are not explicitly protected from nationality discrimination under the AGG
  • Another gap in law is the missing definition of discrimination based on assumed or associated characteristics
  • Racial and ethnic minorities should enjoy better protections against racial profiling since a 2012 case found that ID checks based on skin colour is against the DE constitution

Dimension 2: Fields of application

  • The law goes beyond current EU minimum requirements
  • Everyone is generally protected from racial, ethnic and religious discrimination in all areas of life
  • Non-EU citizens face weaker protections against nationality discrimination in some areas of life, such as housing and health
  • In contrast, nationality discrimination is prohibited in all areas of life in 16 countries (e.g. BE, FR, SE, UK)

Dimension 3: Enforcement mechanisms

  • Potential victims encounter rather average mechanisms to enforce anti-discrimination law in DE, though weaker than in nearby FR, SE, Benelux countries, and, most recently, PL
  • Despite some improvements in 2008, NGOs have both more limited legal roles than in 16 other countries and no opportunities for class actions or actio popularis (unlike in 21, e.g. DK, LU, NL, NO, SE)

Dimension 4: Equality policies

  • Outside of the courts, public bodies and the public itself are barely encouraged to help discrimination victims and promote equality in practice
  • DE has created weak powers for DE's equality body and weak state commitments to equality, ranked 33rd out of the 38 (see esp. FI/SE, BE, FR, NL, UK and use of coordinated network of local anti-discrimination offices in BE, FR, NL, SE)
  • The Federal Anti-discrimination Agency (ADS) has weaker powers to help victims than in 32 out of the 38 countries (IS, IT, JP, PL, ES, TU)
  • Victims can receive a limited investigation of their case, but not its own alternative dispute procedures (15, e.g. Nordics, IE), claims for victims in court (8, e.g. BE, NL, SE), or its own proceedings and investigations (16, e.g. AT, FR, NL, SE, UK)
  • Authorities have made weaker commitments to equality than those in 31 out of the 38 countries, with DE on par with only CZ, IS, IE, LV, RO, SK
  • Authorities are not responsible for informing the public of their rights as potential discrimination victims, besides a few state-financed projects by ADS, NGOs and initiatives like the BfDT: Alliance for Democracy and Tolerance (see instead FR, Nordics, PT/ES, UK)
  • Public and private initiatives have been voluntary so far through 2007's Diversity Charter (imported from FR), the National Integation Plan and several länder diversity targets for the public sector
  • Increasingly the public sector and public contracts are required to promote equality through their work, thanks to  equality duties, labels and/or clauses public sectors (e.g. Nordics, AU, AT, BE, FR, CH, UK, US)

Real beneficiaries

How many racial/ethnic and religious discrimination complaints were made to equality bodies?

Only 0.2% of all cases brought to DE courts concern cases of discrimination, according to an extensive litigation study (Rotthleuthner and Mahlmann 2011). In 2013, the ADS received just 675 complaints on the grounds of ethnic/racial discrimination (532) or religion (143).

Contextual factors

What other factors explain whether potential victims report discrimination cases

  • High general levels of trust in police and justice system
  • 1/3 of DE general public know their rights as discrimination victims, one of the lowest levels of awareness in Europe
  • Most not naturalised in DE and thus less likely to come forward to report a case

Outcome indicators

How many complaints were made last year for every person who said they experienced racial/ethnic and religious discrimination?

Non-reporting is still the norm in Europe and an even greater problem in DE. Based on the 2012 estimates of potential victims, it seems that only 1 complaint reaches the ADS for every 5000 people potentially experiencing racial, ethnic or religious discrimination. Such a low level of complaints was also identified in only Central and Southeastern European countries with new and poorly supported anti-discrimination laws and bodies (e.g. BG, CZ, EE, GR, PL). DE, like many European countries, has not even taken the first steps to properly inform potential victims and resource its anti-discrimination law and equality body.

Evidence base

What do we learn from robust studies?

A non-experimental pilot organised by ADS suggested that standardised application forms can be a good method for anonymous job applications and this increase all applicant groups' chances to receive an interview in nearly all recruitment processes. These anonymous applications limits the opportunities for discriminatory decisions before the interview process (for this summary, see Krause et al. 2012).

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