what is Racial Discrimination

Racial Discrimination Definition Laws and Examples

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Racial Discrimination Definition

It is defined as a circumstance in which one individual is treated less favorably than another because of his or her race, national/ethnic origin, color, or immigrant status. There have been instances of racial discrimination in which someone is treated negatively because they married someone of a different race or color. It is widespread in all societies, and even when people are sufficiently informed, they are nevertheless complicit in discrimination, both knowingly and unwittingly.

In America, racial discrimination is at an all-time high. According to studies, police officers are more likely to stop blacks and Latinos than whites. African Americans earn 10% greater prison time than whites for identical offenses under the federal system.

Racial Discrimination Laws

As racial discrimination is on the rise in the modern-day, authorities have enacted a slew of regulations aimed at protecting those who are repeatedly victimized. Federal law prohibits discrimination on the basis of race in a variety of contexts. The following are some of the laws and actions that have been enacted thus far:

Civil Rights Act of 1964: Title VII

This law ensures that all individuals have equal work chances. Employment discrimination on the basis of color, ethnicity, religion, gender, or national origin is prohibited by law.

The Equal Credit Opportunity Act

Creditors are prohibited from discriminating against credit applications on the basis of color, ethnicity, national origin, religion, marital status, age, or gender, or on the basis of the applicant’s income from a public assistance program, according to this law.

U.S Code Title 42, Chapter 21- Civil Rights

This law bans discrimination against individuals on the basis of their age, gender, race, national origin, or religion.

Fair Housing Act

This law forbids discrimination on the basis of family status, national origin, race, color, gender, religion, or disability in the sale, rental, or financing of a home.

Voting Rights Act of 1965

There are no restrictions or denials on the right to vote under this statute. Additionally, it prohibits discriminatory voting methods throughout the country.

Example of Discrimination

The most well-known instance of racism is between Jews and people from the Middle East, such as Arabs. It has been a long time since Jews despised and mistreated Middle Eastern Arabs. This hostility is referred to as Anti-Semitism, and it persists in the Middle East to this day.

This example pertains to Australia, where aborigines are the continent’s indigenous people. They are seen as less than humans and are so mistreated. When Britain conquered Australia in the 18th century, the laws did not grant aborigines full citizenship. While numerous aborigines have been elected to legislative positions in the Australian government, they continue to endure discrimination rooted in Australian society.

African Americans are another instance of racial discrimination. From the time of slavery to the present day, Africans have been treated unfairly around the world due to the color of their skin. They were treated and sold as cattle during the enslavement era. They were assaulted, assassinated, and even removed from their family members. Some progress was made following the civil rights struggle, however, this occurred in the early twentieth century. Although racial profiling laws were enacted to eliminate discrimination, it continues to exist not just in America, but throughout the world.

Direct discrimination

This occurs when you are treated less favorably than another person in a comparable scenario because of your race. For instance:

If a renting agent refuses to rent you an apartment due to your race, this constitutes direct race discrimination.

Indirect discrimination

This occurs when an organization has a policy or method of operation that disadvantages members of your racial group. For instance:

If a hairdresser refuses to hire stylists who cover their hair, this places Muslim women and Sikh men who cover their hair at a disadvantage when seeking stylist positions.
Occasionally, indirect race discrimination may be tolerated provided the organization or employer can demonstrate a legitimate justification for the discrimination. This is what is referred to as objective justification. For instance:

A Somalian asylum seeker attempts to open a bank account but is denied due to the bank’s requirement that the applicant must have been a resident of the UK for 12 months and have a permanent address. The Somalian gentleman is unable to establish a bank account. The bank would have to demonstrate that its policy was necessary for business purposes (such as fraud prevention) and that no practicable alternative existed.


Harassment occurs when another person humiliates, offends, or degrades you. For instance:

At work, a young British Asian man is constantly called a racist slur by colleagues. His coworkers claim it’s harmless banter, but the employee is insulted and upset.
Harassment is never acceptable. However, if an organization or employer can demonstrate that it took all reasonable steps to prevent its employees from behaving in that manner, you will be unable to bring a claim for harassment against the organization or employer, but you may bring a claim against the harasser.


This is when you are treated poorly as a result of filing a complaint under the Equality Act about racial discrimination. Additionally, it may arise if you are assisting someone who has filed a complaint alleging race-based discrimination. For instance:

The young man in the preceding case wants to lodge an official complaint against his treatment. His manager threatens to fire him if he does not withdraw the complaint.


What is race discrimination?

This occurs when you are treated differently in one of the scenarios covered by the Equality Act due to your race. The treatment could be a one-time occurrence or the product of a race-based regulation or policy. It is not necessary for an act to be intended to be illegal.

What does the Equality Act say about race discrimination?

According to the 2010 Equality Act, you cannot be discriminated against on the basis of your race. In the Equality Act, race can refer to your skin tone or national origin (including your citizenship). Additionally, it can refer to your ethnic or national origins, which may differ from your current nationality. For instance, you may have Chinese ancestors and be a British citizen with a British passport. Additionally, race encompasses ethnic and racial groups. This is a term that refers to a group of people who all share a protected feature such as ethnicity or race. A racial group may consist of two or more separate ethnic groupings, such as black Britons, British Asians, British Sikhs, British Jews, Romany Gypsies, and Irish Travellers. You may face discrimination on the basis of one or more facets of your race. For example, those born in the United Kingdom to Jamaican parents may face discrimination on the basis of their British citizenship or their Jamaican national origins.

What are the four distinct categories of racial discrimination?

There are four primary forms of discrimination based on race.


A positive development is that, according to the laws, individuals can now be held legally liable for their treatment of another person on the basis of race discrimination. As a result, the public is somewhat protected against this act of savagery.

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