What are the areas of expertise of the CET?
The purpose of the CET is to promote, analyse and monitor equal treatment between all persons without discrimination on the basis of race, ethnic origin, sex, sexual orientation, religion or beliefs, handicap or age.
In the performance of its mission, the CET can notably:
- publish reports, issue opinions and recommendations, and carry out studies touching on all matters relating to discrimination;
- produce and supply all information and documentation within the framework of its mission;
- lend assistance to people who feel that they have been the victim of discrimination by providing them with an advisory and orientation service intended to inform victims regarding their individual rights, the legislation, case law and the means for claiming their rights.
The CET is not intended to directly get involved on behalf of victims of discrimination, but rather to serve as an important contact by means of its advisory and orientation functions, such as to carry out its mission on a consultative basis and with the distance required to objectively assess the existing mechanisms, structures and procedures.
What types of discrimination does the CET consider?
The CET can intervene when the discrimination is based on one of the 6 following reasons:
- sex (biological sex and gender identity),
- sexual orientation,
- religion or beliefs,
- membership or not, whether true or assumed, in a given race or ethnic group,
- a handicap or
Any direct or indirect discrimination based on these reasons is forbidden!
What is meant by membership or not, whether true or assumed, in a given race or ethnic group?
The reference to belonging to a race or ethnic group is broad, and serves to take in almost all types of discrimination based on birth.
In particular, the term “ethnic group” refers to a group of individuals having a common language or culture: it serves to protect groups of people that may extend beyond the framework of nations or, on the contrary, may be members of national minorities.
The notion of true or assumed membership or non-membership makes it possible to pursue a perpetrator of discrimination when this person has taken a discriminatory decision against a person due to the belief that this person is or is not a member of a particular ethnic group or race.
What is sex?
Sex includes the biological sex as well as gender identity.
According to the Yogyakarta principles, gender identity is understood to refer to each person’s deeply felt internal and individual experience of gender, which may or may not correspond with the sex assigned at birth, including the personal sense of the body (which may involve, if freely chosen, modification of bodily appearance or function by medical, surgical or other means) and other expressions of gender, including dress, speech and mannerisms.
What is sexual orientation?
The concept of sexual orientation takes in heterosexuality, homosexuality, bisexuality, pansexuality and asexuality.
According to the Yogyakarta principles, sexual orientation is understood to refer to each person’s capacity for profound emotional,affectional and sexual attraction to, and intimate and sexual relations with, individuals of adifferent gender or the same gender or more than one gender.
What are beliefs?
For the CET, beliefs relate to the existence or not of a god or divinities. Also covered are philosophical beliefs such as atheism, agnosticism or secularism.
What is a handicap?
In 2006, the European Court of Justice handed down its first decision regarding the meaning of the word “handicap”. As such, it established a distinction between handicap and illness: “(…) the notion of “handicap” must be understood as targeting a limitation, notably resulting from physical, mental or psychological impairment that hinders the participation of the person in question in professional life (…). For the limitation to fall under the notion of “handicap”, it is therefore probable that it must be of long duration.”
How to contact the CET?
You can get in touch with the CET:
- either by mail at the following address: 26, place de la Gare L-1616 Luxembourg
- or by telephone: (+352) 26 48 30 33
- or by fax: (+352) 26 48 38 73
- or even by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org