What Is Cultural Discrimination?

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Cultural discrimination refers to exclusion, restriction or hate that is directed at a person or a group on the basis of perceived or real differences in cultural values and beliefs. UNESCO indicates that discrimination can be direct or indirect and often leads to harassment or denial of basic rights. Religious hate, tribalism and racism are the most common forms of cultural discrimination.

Because cultural discrimination is illegal, individuals and organizations are mandated to provide equal access to opportunities and services, such as education, health and employment. According to About.com, cultural discrimination results from social stereotyping and leads to poor communication and interpersonal relationships.

UNESCO notes that cultural discrimination is commonly directed at ethnic minorities within the society, organizations or institutions. According to Wikipedia, racial profiling by law enforcement officers is also a form of cultural discrimination. Cultural discrimination can manifests itself through unfair hiring, unjust firing or sexual harassment. The Civil Rights Act was designed to protect people from all forms of discrimination. Cultural discrimination can also occur in politics, such as when the ethnic majority of a nation rules for a long time, according to Wikipedia.

About.com notes that organizations implement anti-discrimination policies and embrace diversity in order to promote exchange of creative ideas among employees and improve performance. Globalization contributes to the growth of cultural diversity, making it important to respect and appreciate people from all cultural backgrounds, according to About.com.