NL – Discrimination is still a widely experienced problem on the labor market in the Netherlands, according to a survey by Intermediair and Nationale Vacturebank among over 2,100 Netherlands residents. Employees reported being discriminated against because of their age, because of their foreign roots, or because of their weight, among other things, RTL Nieuws reports.
The most common reports of discrimination were based on age, with 53 percent of respondents experiencing this type of discrimination. 27 percent reported being discriminated against because of their origin. This percentage was highest among job seekers with a Turkish, Moroccan, Surinamese or Antillean background. One respondent said that she was never invited for an interview until she started using her Dutch husband’s surname on her CV.
“Those young recruiters think they have wisdom and see 50-plus as a kind of handicap,” one respondent said. Another said: “Because I was not born in the Netherlands, it is assumed that I am not smart enough or that I don’t speak the language well enough. That while I lived in the Netherlands almost all my life.” And: “I have a very special Frisian first name. For people who do not know the name, it can come across as foreign. Furthermore, I have experienced in a conversation that age played a role in a way that I did not like. The recruiter felt that because I was no longer in my late twenties, it would be more difficult for me to learn new things.”
Dutch employers are not allowed to ask about private matters when hiring someone, according to the application codes of the NVP. Despite this, employees report that questions about pregnancy and skin color often come up. One person was asked whether they feel more Dutch or Surinamese. “Why is it that you are not married?” another applicant heard.
The discrimination doesn’t stop after the hiring process. 56 percent of respondents reported hearing annoying jokes and 51 percent inappropriate comments. They also reported that men’s ideas are considered more seriously than women’s. 22 percent of respondents said they have raised the issue with their manager, 8 percent with HR, 8 percent with a confidential counselor. 28 percent said they have taken it up with the colleagues responsible. 16 percent switched jobs.
Workers are more concerned about discrimination than employers. 73 percent of unemployed workers and 57 percent of employed respondents said that discrimination is a problem, compared to 43 percent of employers. 58 percent of employers said that their organization has no objectives or policies in the field of diversity and said they do not consider it necessary. 51 percent of employers said that diversity is not a criteria when hiring new employees.