Anti-Black racism is ‘widespread’ in Germany, new report finds

“There is no area of life in which discrimination and racism are not extensive problems," said the authors of a new 'Afrozensus' report.

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Racism against Black people living in Germany is a “widespread” problem, according to a comprehensive new study.

Of the roughly 83.7 million people living in Germany today, more than one million have African ancestry, according to the authors of a German Afrozensus report released earlier this week.

The survey of nearly 6,000 Afro-Germans, which took place between July 20, 2020 and Sept. 6, 2020, revealed that more than 91 percent of Black people living in the country said they believe anti-Black discrimination in housing occurs “often” or “very often,” according to a Bloomberg analysis on the study.

Demonstrators Across Germany Pay Tribute To George Floyd
People stand with raised fists during a silence for eight minutes and 46 seconds in tribute to George Floyd during a protest against racism and police brutality on June 06, 2020 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Andreas Rentz/Getty Images)

Nearly 87 percent of respondents said the same about dealing with security personnel in Germany.

More than 84 percent of Afro-Germans surveyed said police discrimination occurs “often” or “very often.” Just shy of 85 percent of those surveyed said the same about discrimination in the media and on the internet. A majority of respondents said the same was true for anti-Black discrimination in education, work, and the justice system, as well as agencies and public authorities.

Anti-Black discrimination is especially bad in the German housing market, security services and policing, based on the survey results, with more than 60 percent of respondents saying discrimination in those areas occurs “very frequently.”

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The Berlin-based Black community group Each One Teach One and the civil society organization Citizens for Europe organized the Afrozensus study. The authors emphasized that respondents were asked about their perceived frequency of discrimination, regardless of their own personal experiences with it.

“The results of the Afrozensus indicate that anti-Black racism is widespread in Germany and anchored in institutions,” the study authors wrote in a press release on the report obtained by Bloomberg. “There is no area of life in which discrimination and racism are not extensive problems.”

Bloomberg noted that Germany hasn’t collected data about its residents’ ethnic or racial background since the end of World War II. In the aftermath of the Holocaust, the nation’s government has asserted that those in power shouldn’t be allowed to identify demographic groups at risk of persecution, according to Bloomberg.

Opponents of that policy in Germany have argued the lack of ethnic and racial demographic data unintentionally makes racism harder to track and allows it to remain hidden.

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