The law provides all citizens equality before the law and forbids discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, or language. In actuality, however,
persons of African (Afro-Peruvian) descent faced societal discrimination and prejudice. Despite constituting a large minority, Afro-Peruvians generally did not hold leadership positions in government, business, or the military, with the exception of the nation's first female Afro-Peruvian cabinet member. Few Afro-Peruvians served as officers in the navy or air force.
In February the Ombudsman's Office published a report on the Afro-Peruvian community that cited structural discrimination and social exclusion as key barriers to integration into society and stated that Afro-Peruvians had particular difficulty accessing health and education services. NGOs alleged that employers often found ways to refuse to hire Afro-Peruvians or relegated them to low-paying service positions. The law prohibits the mention of race in job advertisements, although employers often required applicants to submit photographs.
Race, Racism and the Law
Vernellia R. Randall
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