Czech inspectors issue discrimination fines: Foreigners charged more, Roma refused service
The Czech Trade Inspection Authority (CTIA) undertook 257 inspections during the second quarter of this year focused on discrimination in restaurants and shops, confirming suspicions of discrimination against consumers in five cases, or almost two per cent. Violations of legal regulations, such as dishonest sales, were found in 129 situations, i.e., at every other business that was inspected.
During the second quarter the fines for discirmination in six previous cases took effect worth a total of CZK 107 000 (EUR 4 000). During its inspections the authority uses Romani inspectors and also inspectors who speak foreign languages very well.
In two restaurants the "foreign-language guests" were charged more than they should have been, while in two other establishments service was even refused. "One case was a restaurant where the personnel stated they do not serve migrants, even though there was no legitimate reason for them to refuse service. The other case was a real estate agent that refused to respond to a consumer's interest in leasing an apartment immediately after the consumer announced that he is Romani, telling him instead that the owner of the unit does not want to lease it to Romani people," CTIA spokesperson Jiří Fröhlich told Czech Radio.
The inspectors focused during their visits to restaurateurs and shopkeepers on inspecting whether sales were conducted honestly and found misconduct was being perpetrated by every other business owner they inspected. Restaurateurs, for example, were not serving the correct volume of beverages, were not informing consumers what the products for sale cost, or were not giving receipts.
Inspectors issued fines for such violations in a total amount of CZK 673 000 (EUR 25 000). If a consumer encounters discrimination - if the staff of a restaurant or shop, for example, refuse the consumer service - that consumer can call police or directly contact the CITA by sending an email through its website.
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