Equal Opportunities Officer

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An Equal Opportunity Officer (also: Women's Representative , Office for Women , Equality Office , equality body or women's representative ) is in the Federal Republic of Germany a function within an authority, a social institution, a municipality or a company, dedicated to the promotion and implementation of equal rights and equality of women and Men and performs internal tasks for the respective institution or company.

In the federal administrations, this function is restricted to women in accordance with Section 19   BGleiG . Corresponding regulations can also be found in the respective state equality laws in administrative regulations and in some municipal constitutions .

Equal Opportunities Officer according to the Federal Equal Opportunities Act

The Equal Opportunities Commissioner under the Federal Equal Opportunities Act (BGleiG) has the general task of protecting employees from discrimination based on their gender and of enforcing the General Equal Treatment Act. In order to be able to fulfill this task as possible without any organizational influence, the equal opportunities officer belongs to the personnel administration and is not subject to any instructions when carrying out her work.

In every department with at least 100 employees, an equal opportunities officer must be appointed from among the female employees, following a secret election by the female employees. Only a woman can become an equal opportunity officer under the BGleiG. The procedure for carrying out the election is regulated in the Equal Opportunities Officer Election Ordinance. A deputy must be elected and appointed for each equal opportunities officer. This process is also supported by the above. Electoral ordinance regulated. The office of deputy is basically set up as an absence substitute, but the equal opportunities officer can delegate tasks. The term of office of the equal opportunities officer is four years. In order to carry out her tasks, the equal opportunities officer has a statutory minimum entitlement to relief from other official activities. The relief should amount to at least half of the general regular working hours, in departments with more than 600 employees the full regular working hours.

In the federal administration, the equal opportunities officer has the task of promoting and monitoring the implementation of the BGleiG and the General Equal Treatment Act (AGG - in part, with regard to discrimination because of gender and because of sexual harassment). She participates in all measures taken by her authority that relate to equality between women and men, the reconciliation of family and work, and protection against sexual harassment in the workplace. She must be involved in personnel measures (e.g. recruitment), organizational and social matters at an early stage. In addition, she advises and supports women in their professional advancement or in cases of disadvantage. She is involved in drawing up the equality plan . She belongs to the personnel administration and is directly assigned to the agency management, but is not subject to instructions in the performance of her work. As part of the affiliation, she is involved in personnel matters at an early stage. She has the right to inspect files, which also extends to personnel files and relates to the parts relevant to the decision. In these cases the consent of those affected is not required.

She has the direct right and obligation to speak to the head of the department and is supported by them in carrying out their tasks. The BGleiG applies to the direct and indirect federal administration, the federal courts and the federal administration institutions organized under private law (e.g. federal foundations, registered associations). The federal states each have comparable regulations.

State equality laws

In order to further specify and implement equality in the authorities of the federal states and municipalities, state equality laws (LGG) have come into force in all federal states (albeit under different names).

Equal Opportunities Officer at the municipal level

The appointment of an equal opportunities officer is also partially planned at the municipal level. However, your order is fundamentally optional.


  • Eva Blome, Alexandra Erfmeier; Nina Gülcher, Sandra Smykalla: Handbook on gender equality policy at universities. From the advancement of women to diversity management? Springer VS Verlag, 2nd completely revised and expanded edition 2014, ISBN 978-3-531-17567-6 .
  • Sabine Berghahn , Ulrike Schultz (Hrsg.): Legal manual for women and equality officers. Law from A – Z for women and equality officers in public administration, companies and advice centers (2 volumes), Verlag Dashöfer 2013 (current status), ISBN 978-3-931832-44-5 .
  • Christopher Liebscher: The Equal Opportunities Commissioner under the Federal Equal Opportunities Act . In: Journal for public labor and collective bargaining law . 2016, ISSN  1869-9367 , p. 244 ff .
  • Helmut Lopacki: Staff Council and Equal Opportunities Officer . In: The staff representation . No. 10/11 , 2018, ISSN  0476-3475 , p. 374-383 .
  • Lisa Erzinger / Tessa Hillermann, Equal Opportunities Laws in Germany , in: Verwaltungsrundschau 12/2016, p. 403.

Web links

Wiktionary: Equal Opportunities Officer  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

See also

Individual evidence

  1. For example: Lower Saxony Municipal Constitutional Law , Section 8: "Municipalities that are not member municipalities of integrated municipalities have to appoint an equal opportunities officer."
  2. 36 para. 1 BGleiG.
  3. 36 .
  4. Ordinance on the election of equal opportunities officers and their deputies in federal agencies (Equal Opportunities Officer Election Ordinance - GleibWV) . Retrieved December 5, 2019.
  5. § 5 GemO-NRW . But not z. B. in Rhineland-Palatinate.