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Anti-Discrimination Law In The Netherlands: A Specific Legal Patchwork, Normative System And Institutional Structure

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Chapter Summary

The fact that European law constitutes a major source of anti-discrimination law in the Netherlands entails the incorporation of a very specific system of norms and concepts. This chapter focuses on the application in the Netherlands and the interpretation thereof in the practice of the specialised body, the Equal Treatment Commission. An essential feature of part of the anti-discrimination law in the Netherlands is the closed character of the legal system of some major provisions. A system of non-discrimination law can be defined as either 'open' or 'closed' with reference to different aspects, the 'prohibited grounds' of discrimination, the scope of the prohibition of discrimination and the possibilities of justifying different treatment or of making exceptions to equality provisions. Direct discrimination refers to a treatment which is explicitly based on a prohibited ground.

Keywords: anti-discrimination law; Equal Treatment Commission; European law; legal system; Netherland



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