The big gap: perceived, experienced and reported discrimination among immigrants in Italy


  • Pietro Vulpiani Senior Adviser on Migration - Public Administration, Italy


Discrimination experienced by immigrants can only partially be captured by complaints re-ported by anti-discrimination institutions, because of the uncertain will of discriminated migrants of denouncing the racial harassment as well as social, cultural and political con-straints. Comparing the number of reports followed by judicial authorities and equality bod-ies with the results of national statistical surveys is possible to fill the gap between experi-enced and reported discrimination. The article will present a comparison between the num-ber and trends of complaints received by the Italian Equality body against discrimination during ten years, and data from a national inquiry of the Italian Institute of Statistics de-tecting the experiences of discrimination suffered by foreign nationals resident in Italy. The numerical chasm between the two reporting procedures shows the great variability of per-ceived, experimented and complained discrimination, offering at the same time an in-depth and original overview of xenophobia and discrimination in Italy.


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