55 percent of people in NL face discrimination when applying for jobs

55 percent of people in NL face discrimination when applying for jobs

New research has revealed that 55 percent of people in the Netherlands have faced discrimination at some point throughout the job application process.

Facing discrimination when applying for jobs

A survey conducted by Motivaction on behalf of the National Job Board (Nationale Vacaturebank) has revealed that discrimination is still a very prevalent issue for people working in the Netherlands. Out of the 2.000 survey participants - made up of employees, employers, and jobseekers - 55 percent said that they had experienced discrimination when they were applying for a job, and 53 percent said they experienced discrimination at a job interview

The research revealed that age was the most common reason for discrimination in the application process, with 53 percent of respondents saying they had experienced it. In second place came discrimination against origin, with 27 percent, and appearance came in third, with 25 percent. Other kinds of discrimination reported in the survey included discrimination against (last) name (22 percent), gender (18 percent), and sexual orientation (three percent). 

The survey also looked at discrimination in the workplace. 40 percent of respondents said they had had experiences with colleagues or a manager that made them feel uncomfortable or discriminated against. 56 percent of respondents said discriminatory jokes were sometimes made in the workplace. 

Tackling discrimination in the Netherlands 

217 employers took part in the survey, and Sharita Boon of the Nationale Vacaturebank said there were differences in the perceptions of employees, jobseekers, and employers: "57 percent of the respondents say that discrimination on the labour market is a problem, and among the (temporarily) unemployed it is even 73 percent. But among employers, 'only' 43 percent agree with that statement. So there is a difference in that which organisations do not understand or may not want to see."  

Boon says it is essential for employers to be aware of and combat the discrimination many people face: "The problem does not lie with the person who is being discriminated against, but in the selection process that excludes him or her."

Motivaction’s research found that 25 percent of employees say their company keeps tabs on discrimination in the workplace, and 77 percent said their company has set rules of conduct. 

Victoria Séveno


Victoria Séveno

Victoria grew up in Amsterdam, before moving to the UK to study English and Related Literature at the University of York and completing her NCTJ course at the Press Association...

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