Germany court ruled former East Germany citizens not unique ethnic group

On April 15, 2010, a German court ruled that persons from the former German Democratic Republic, or East Germany, did not constitute a unique ethnic group for discrimination prevention purposes. The matter arose when an East Berlin woman sued a Stuttgart company after the company rejected her employment application and returned her resume with the term "Ossi," a derogatory term referring to someone with ties to East Germany, written alongside a minus sign. Though admitting the term's negative connotation, the judge concluded that a different place of birth alone was inadequate to qualify former East Germans as a distinct ethnic group, and that additional attributes such as tradition, culture, language and religion had to be considered.


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