Chronic diseases

“A narrow understanding of the concept of disabilities excludes people with chronic diseases.  Here, the court is called upon to abandon the restrictive definition of disabilities. In case no improvements are made, action should be taken by the legislator. ”

- quote from Christine Lüders – Director of the anti-discrimination office and Hubert Hüppe – Representative of the Federal Government Commissioner for the interests of people with disabilities (translated from German).

The present dossier provides information on the topic of discrimination of people who suffer from chronic diseases. People with chronic diseases experience daily restrictions in life as well as exclusion due to their disease. So far, contrary to disabilities, chronic diseases are not explicitly mentioned in the German General Equal Treatment Act (AGG). In 2013 BUG supported the lawsuit of a HIV-positive person before the Federal Labour Court. You can learn more about this topic here.

Diseases, chronic diseases and disabilities are conceptualized separately. In certain chronic diseases there is, in addition to permanent health restriction, a risk of stigmatization. A chronically ill person is restricted, in such a case, not by the chronic disease itself, but by the stigma attached to this disease regarding social participation.

People with chronic diseases can encounter discrimination in different areas of life, for instance in the workplace, insurance, health care or in access to housing.

Various legal provisions at the level of national law, European Union law and international law aim to eliminate and prevent discrimination due to health restrictions and in particular due to chronic diseases .

We offer here a selection of material on the subject.

In the near future, we will provide a print version of the dossier.

© Büro zur Umsetzung von Gleichbehandlung e.V. 2011