Boy reports Gothenburg council for discrimination

A 14 year old boy who was refused a leisure discount card aimed at girls has reported Gothenburg City Council to Jamö, Sweden's discrimination ombudsman.

The boy tried to buy one of the cards, which gives special deals at various companies and associations, at Frölunda Culture Centre, but was told that he couldn’t have one.

“I think guys should also be able to use this card,” said the 14 year old to Göteborgs-Posten, adding that all young people needed more things to do in their leisure time – not just girls.

He was also annoyed that the card came with an incentive gift of skin cream.

“Why are they attracting 13 year olds with skin cream,” he demanded to know. “Must gender roles be stamped in by the council?”

Sweden’s anti-discrimination law was tightened up in July, when it became illegal to charge different prices to men and women at bars, restaurants, nightclubs and hair salons among other places.

Since then, 40 cases of discrimination have been reported to Jamö, which will now investigate the Gothenburg situation.

“It’s not completely clear-cut because the law allows so-called reasonable exceptions,” said Eva Nikell, the Jamö press officer, to GP.

“In this case I think Gothenburg council wants to encourage young girls’ leisure activities because they often don’t have the same access to sports centres,” she said.

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