Future Prospects for EU Equality Law. Lessons to be Learnt from the Proposed Equal Treatment Directive

L.B. Waddington*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


This article reflects on future developments in the field of EU equality law and, in particular; on the prospects for the adoption of a new EU directive addressing discrimination. It analyses the 2008 Commission proposal for a new Equal Treatment Directive, the amendments which have been made to that proposal and the general response of the Member States. The article identifies three (contradictory) trends in approaches to EU equality law amongst the Member States. The first consists of a desire to take a step back from earlier EU equality directives and, in particular; the Racial Equality Directive. The second consists of a desire to adopt the same approach as has been followed in earlier equality directives, and not to follow a more ambitious path. The third relates to disability (but not any other ground), and consists of a desire to adopt a more ambitious approach, and to use the directive as a tool to implement parrs of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. This article considers the arguments for adopting both a "horizontal" (or multi-ground) directive, in line with the 2008 Commission proposal, or alternatively, a series of ground-specific equality directives, and concludes by reflecting on the prospects for the adoption of either the current proposal, or a disability-specific non-discrimination directive.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-184
JournalEuropean Law Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2011

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