According to Czech law, the right to employment cannot be denied to potential applicants based on gender, age, race, health or citizenship.
But among a survey of 258 employers in the Czech Republic last year by the State Labor Inspection Office (Státní úřad inspekce práce), discriminatory hiring practices were found in 219 of them – more than four out of every five.
Inspectors specifically targeted advertisements for job vacancies posted by the employers, and often found that adverts that were specifically asking for employees of a specific gender or age – for example, seeking a retiree to work as a cashier, or a woman to work as a cleaner.
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“The subject of the inspections was most frequently advertised vacancies with potentially discriminatory language, such as seeking […] female maids, female students, female hostesses, salesmen or saleswomen, male or female assistants, waiters or waitresses, etc.,” Richard Kolibač,a spokesperson for the Inspection Office, told Česká televize.
During a similar inspection two years ago, the State Labor Inspection Office investigated 117 companies, and found unequal or discriminatory practices in 109 of them.
Last year, the Office handed out 53 fines for a total of 253,000 crowns to employers that had violated the Czech Republic’s employment laws.
The worst practices were found in smaller companies that did not have a human resources department.
“Employers continue to see nothing wrong in [specifically] seeking, for example, a retired woman for a cashier position,” Kolibač said.
“The notion of discrimination based on gender or age is not yet sufficiently rooted in the awareness of smaller Czech employers.”
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