Diversity In The Workplace

 
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Diversity in the workplace is an increasingly important issue both for employers and for other stakeholders. Positive action can help to increase the representation of traditionally disadvantaged groups in the workplace, but employers must take care to ensure that such measures do not inadvertently lead to unlawful discrimination.

What is generally meant by diversity in the workplace in your jurisdiction? Which factors are the primary focus?

Research shows that - in accordance with global trends - Hungarian employers tend to attach great importance to fostering diversity in the workplace. Although some employers have yet to implement particular measures in this regard, few refuse to address the issue.

Research focusing on why employers find it important to foster diversity has shown that:

the majority of employers (particularly those with an international background) consider workplace diversity to be part of their corporate culture; some employers wish to adapt the best practices used by employers operating in other EU member states; some employers wish to benefit from state subsidies linked to the employment of certain social groups; and a small proportion of employers believe that a diverse workplace can help their business. In Hungary, the employment of workers of all age groups is a key focus area. This is supported by legislation, as the government wants to incentivise (eg, with tax refunds or allowances) the employment of entrants to the labour market, parents of infant children and the elderly (ie, employees of pre-retirement age and pensioners).

Another key focus area is the employment of workers with a reduced capacity to work, as well as low-skilled and disabled workers, which is also government subsidised.

The employment of foreign workers and workers representing certain minorities is another important element of a diverse workplace. Unfortunately, however, this is less common for smaller Hungarian employers (with a workforce of fewer than 500 employees), so this is an area for further development. What progress has been made to date in your jurisdiction to foster diversity in the workplace?

Although a complex national strategy on this matter has yet to be implemented, progress has been made in the past decade to implement legal measures to foster diversity in the workplace.

General awareness of workplace diversity has gradually increased over the past decade. Research shows that employers now attach a greater importance...

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