Employees believe discrimination in labor market occurs mainly on grounds of age and health condition

  • 2022-11-03
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - In Latvia, women earn on average 11.6 percent less than men, however employees believe that discrimination in the labor market mainly occurs on the grounds of age and health condition, Kristine Pakarkle, a legal adviser to the Ombudsman' Office, said at the Labor Law Forum on Thursday. 

The expert indicated that the gender pay gap still exists in Europe. According to the European Union's data, while the average gender pay gap in the bloc is 13 percent, in Latvia it is even larger - 22.3 percent. The Latvian Central Statistical Bureau's (CSB) data shows, however, that Latvia's gender pay gap in 2021 was 11.6 percent. 

The Ombudsman's Office has so far conducted two surveys on gender inequality in the labor market. Their results show that the surveyed employees rank sex as the third most commonplace reason for discrimination. 

Age and health condition, meanwhile, are seen as the most commonplace reasons for discrimination. 

Pakarkle said that over the past three years, 21 percent of employees have indicated that they have been exposed to discrimination at work. Most of them named their direct superiors as the agent of discrimination. 

The Free Trade Union Confederation of Latvia (LBAS) organized the annual Labor Law Forum in collaboration with the Friedrich Ebert Foundation (Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung).