The member organisations of Coalition for Equality have developed the present document to evaluate the key challenges, discrimination practices and state policy on equality in Georgia in 2016. The document also presents specific recommendations for relevant public institutions to facilitate the development of effective anti-discrimination policies.

The document individually describes the human rights situation for various discriminated,marginalised and vulnerable social groups (including women, the LGBT community, non-dominant religious and ethnic groups, children, persons with disabilities, homeless people, and the political opposition) and evaluates thekey tendencies and deficiencies of public policy implemented in 2016 in this realm.major findings of the report:

  • The mandate of the Public Defender is rather limited in reviewing the cases of discrimination and the actions taken against private individuals,and the enforcement of its decisions and recommendations with effective legal instruments is not ensured.
  • The Government of Georgia has not developed a systemic positive policy to support equality since the adoption of the antidiscrimination law, which would, inter alia, ensure the revision of existing ethics codes and internal regulations, prohibition of discrimination and hate speech and guarantees of religious neutrality in public service.
  • Ineffective investigation of hate crimes and the absence of a strategy to prevent such crimes remain a serious challenge. Ineffective investigation of hate crimes encourages impunity in society and a hostile environment towards non-dominant groups.
  • Increased instances of the use of hate speech by politicians as well as xenophobic,homophobic political initiatives encourage hate-driven violence and create a hostile environment towards discriminated groups.
  • steps taken towards ensuring women’s equality are weak and haphazard.
  • The LGBT community is the most marginalised group in the country—with politicians politicising LGBT rights, a clearly hostile and homophobic environment has been formed towards the community.
  • The non-secular and discriminatory policy of the government isolates non-dominant religious groups from the political and social scene and often deprives them of the opportunity to exercise the freedom of religion.
  • The last few years have seen a weakening of the process of integration of ethnic minorities. With the far-right groups mobilising and radicalising, instances of extreme violence and discrimination on the grounds of ethnicity and race have been observed in the reporting period.
  • Although certain measures were undertaken to promote the equality of socially vulnerable groups, including children, persons with disabilities, homeless persons, the launched reforms are weak and sporadic. The oppression of these groups is invisible and is not a priority on the political agenda.