The EU directives that were decisive in implementing the AGG stipulate that violations of the prohibition of discrimination are punishable by “effective, proportionate, and dissuasive” sanctions. It is up to the Member States to decide the drafting of these sanctions. The German legislator decided to introduce the ability to make claims for compensation and damages in §§ 15 and 21 AGG under civil law as a central form of sanctioning.

BUG recommends the installation of a more effective mechanism for sanctioning and, above all, the introduction of a mechanism for sanctioning under Public Law.

Additionally, there is need to alter and delete existing options for sanctioning in the light of European Union law as well as regarding the content.

§ 15 (1) AGG regulates the right to compensation for material damages suffered in the workplace as a result of discrimination. This includes, for example, the cost of travel to an interview, where the applicant is denied hire based on discrimination. Here, the liability of the employer is dependent on whether he or she (or someone who was instructed to) is to be blamed for the discrimination. This is contrary to European Union law in two aspects and should therefore be deleted. Read more.

§ 15 (2) AGG regulates claims for compensation that a discriminated against person can demand for damages of personal rights. The factors that determine the amount of the compensation should be altered because they are not objective and may be in contradiction to the principle of equality of article 3 (1) German Basic Law. Read more.

Additionally, the two-month assertion deadline of § 15 (4) AGG should be extended to at least a period of twelve months. In practice, the sanctions attached to the AGG are not as “dissuasive” as EU legislation demands it to be. This needs to be supplemented in the AGG.

Furthermore, the legal norm should also be extended to include the right to information. Most often, discriminated against persons have very few indications that their denial to employment arose from one of the discriminatory grounds covered by § 1 AGG. This creates a situation where there is lack of evidence which can hardly be resolved otherwise than by means of a right to information.

A further improvement of the protection from discrimination in employment can also be achieved by making third parties who discriminate liable as well. For example, this would affect authorised superiors, colleagues, customers and business partners. Unfortunately, the AGG does not explicitly arrange liabilities of external third parties.