Second Edition Country Perspectives on Diversity and Equal Treatment
Edited by Alain Klarsfeld, Lize A.E. Booysen, Eddy Ng, Ian Roper and Ahu Tatli
Chapter 5: Equality and diversity in years of crisis in France
This chapter follows a previous contribution in which we had underscored the importance of gender equality for the construction of the general equality framework in France (Bender et al., 2010). We provide an update on the general legal anti-discrimination framework as well as on the gender equality legislation in its latest developments in this chapter. We also briefly present public policies and their recent developments in specific areas other than gender: disability, age, sexual orientation, religion. In spite of the economic slowdown and stagnation since 2009, equality and diversity have still been considered to be an important area of the intervention of the French government and parliament. A few recent laws tend to constrain companies to adopt processes and, in some areas, to achieve set targets within a certain deadline, such that we can talk of a 'stepping up' of positive action in various domains such as gender equality, managing an ageing workforce, promoting youth employment and including the disabled into the labour market. In the second part, we describe the advent of diversity management as a response to the shortcomings of social policies aiming at the integration of immigrants and their descendants and updates in soft law systems meant to address ethnic diversity. We finally present an update on diversity research since 2009 and conclude with pending current equality and diversity issues.
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