As many as 20 per cent of women aged 20-39 had experienced discrimination at their workplace or during a job search over the past year, according to a survey conducted by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL).
The extensive Healthy Finland Survey said that experiences of workplace discrimination were most common among highly educated women, said THL in a press release on Thursday.
People aged 20–74 were asked about discrimination in working life and 16% of all women aged and 11% of men had experienced discrimination at their workplace or during a job search over the past year.
The share of women aged 55-64 who had experienced discrimination was also high: 16% of women aged 55-64 said they had encountered discrimination at their workplace or during a job search.
In the scope of the study discrimination was defined as being treated in a manner that was less favourable than others because of a personal characteristic. Such characteristics may include age, gender, ethnicity, skin colour, disability, appearance, sexual orientation or religion.
"The prevalence of discrimination in working life experienced by young women may be due to many factors. Young age groups are more diverse, which may expose them to discrimination. Employers may still expect young women to take family leave, which may also expose them to discrimination. There may also be other gendered assumptions and valuations. In addition, young generations may be better able to identify discrimination than their parents and be more aware of it,” said Research Professor Anu Castaneda.
"Experiences of discrimination have plenty of links with people's experiences of security, mental health, experiences of loneliness, wellbeing, trust and quality of life. Therefore, experiences of discrimination should be actively addressed in different contexts, such as working life, service situations and everyday encounters," Castaneda added.