The Constitution of the Republic of Estonia establishes everyone’s right to equal treatment, stating that no one must be subject to discrimination. It also means that no one must be treated unfairly or discriminated against because of a disability.
The Equal Treatment Act protects people with disabilities against unequal treatment only in the area of employment and vocational training:
- upon establishing employment conditions and recruitment and selection criteria;
- upon promotion;
- upon concluding an employment or service contract;
- upon establishing working conditions;
- upon remuneration;
- upon termination of an employment or service contract or dismissal;
- upon vocational training, career guidance, retraining or further training
- upon membership of the associations of employees or employers.
The Equal Treatment Act explicitly prohibits discrimination on grounds of disability only in the field of employment and vocational training. However, the Commissioner for Equality has stated in her opinion that vocational education can also be understood as tertiary education, which prepares a person to work in a certain profession, field or position.
Although the Equal Treatment Act protects a disabled person from unequal treatment only in employment and vocational training, this does not mean that discrimination is permitted in other situations, such as the provision of services.
Estonia has also ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, which seeks to ensure that all persons with disabilities enjoy their human rights and fundamental freedoms and to promote respect for their inherent dignity.