Discrimination is the disadvantage, disparagement, disregard, exclusion of or violence against persons on the basis of actual or ascribed group-specific characteristics or social categories such as gender, sexual identity, origin, disability/illness, religion/belief and/or age.
- The decisive factor for discrimination is the result not the motive (intention, thoughtlessness, administrative practice, etc.).
- Multiple discrimination means that there are different power structures that are intertwined. This refers to the intersection and interaction of different forms of discrimination.
- Levels of discrimination: Discrimination can occur at three levels. The individual, the institutional and the societal level.
- Actions of individuals (individual (interactional) level).
- institutions (discriminatory behavior or conditions) (institutional level)
- linguistic or visual representations (societal level)
- asymmetrical opportunities and resources (structural discrimination)
You are welcome to contact us for further information on the topic of recognizing discrimination.
Where can I get support?
...in the work or study environment.
A first step can be to talk to someone you know. For many people it is a helpful support to talk to others, to name feelings and to share experiences. But counseling services such as those offered by the Diversity Office are there for your support, too.
Talking to fellow students or colleagues can also be relieving. Especially if they can confirm your experience. Have someone accompany you to conversations if you feel unsure.
Depending on the situation, an accompanied conversation with the person from whom the discrimination originates can be helpful. This can help the person who has behaved discriminatorily to rethink their own behavior and change structures.
You are free to seek counseling at any time. If you wish, we can advise you anonymously and always free of charge.
... at counseling centers
In addition to the Diversity Office, there are a number of counseling centers within and outside of the FSU Jena that are dedicated to your personal concerns. We will be happy to assist you in choosing an appropriate counseling center for you.
Create a memory log
How do I create a memory log?
A memory log is primarily helpful in order to be able to understand the discrimination oneself and in a consultation. It provides an usefull resource when legal action is taken.
Sample questions for an informal memory log:
- Where and when did the situation occur?
- From whom did the discrimination originate?
- Brief description of the situation: what was said? How was it acted upon? In what order did who say or do what?
- How did the situation end?
- Were there other people involved or people who saw the situation? Ask for contact information and ask the person to write their own memory log
Inform youself about your own rights
There is a general prohibition of discrimination. With the entry into force of the "Allgemeinen Gleichbehandlungsgesetzes" (AGG; translation: General Equal Treatment Act) in 2006 and the "Thüringer Hochschulgesetz" (traslation: Thuringian Higher Education Act) of 2018, there is a law against discrimination based on the characteristics of ethnic origin, gender, age, disability, sexual identity, religion and ideology.
But anti-discrimination law is more than the AGG. Depending on the situation, the following legal texts against discrimination may also be relevant:
- Criminal Code,
- Disability Equality Act,
- Federal and state equality laws,
- or international and European human rights conventions
Write a complaint
Letters of complaint can help clarify situations and/or enforce rights.
In a consultation, we can discuss with you whether you want to take this step.