No. 1131-20

br. 07-00-577/2020-02 date: 8.3.2021.




The opinion was issued in the procedure regarding the complaint of the Association AA, against BB, due to discrimination on the grounds of sex. The complaint states that BB, in the morning program of TV Prva, on December 3, 2020,  stated that “we do not need a situation we had last week regarding ‘Black Friday’ and I will absolutely say that now, because for five to seven days, and we have had a cross-section yesterday, we had something that we knew would happen, namely, that for the first time, we have almost a 60% share of newly infected in the female population, while men have always dominated. It means that it is, after all, our shopaholic mentality.” The complainants allege that with this statement BB discriminated against women. In a statement regarding the complaint, BB declared that his statement was taken out of the context of everything he said then as a member of the Crisis Response Team for the Suppression of Infectious Disease COVID-19, namely, that on that occasion he stated only the fact that, for the first, time a large number of patients were women as compared to men, and that his comment on the shopaholic mentality did not refer to women, but to mentality, that is everyone who went shopping en masse that day. During the procedure, it was determined that BB made the statement during a guest appearance on TV “Prva”, on December 3, 2020, when he spoke and presented statistical data on the current epidemiological situation in the Republic of Serbia. When deciding in this case, the Commissioner took into consideration that BB, as a member of the Crisis Response Team, presented statistical data on the number of infected, indicating that 60% of the total number of newly infected are women. On that occasion, he concluded that it was “our shopaholic mentality”. Given the content of BB’s statement, it can be concluded that his comment on the shopaholic mentality did not refer exclusively to women, as the statement spoke of “our shopaholic mentality”, but to everyone who went shopping that day. For these reasons, the Commissioner gave the opinion that the provisions of the Law on Prohibition of Discrimination were not violated by that specific statement. However, in order to avoid any possibility of interpretation or perception of a social group or person in the context of the increase the number of infected, instead of individuals who do not adhere to measures to combat the transmission of infectious diseases, the Commissioner, using the competences from Article 33, paragraph 1, item 9, of the Law on Prohibition of Discrimination, recommended measures, that BB, in the future, takes care how he presents the data on the current epidemiological situation.

Brankica Jankovic

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