The idea of prevention of discrimination as well as compensation and equalization of rights brought to life the concept of positive discrimination. The ambiguity of the definitions of this phenomenon, different approaches, and the policy of states, specified by national experience of solving minorities’ problems, - give rise to debate in the scientific environment, as well as among politicians, government officials, various approaches, programs, strategic directions in the development of states, affecting eventually the global coexistence of cultures, nations, ethnic groups, and so on.
The idea of positive discrimination as a policy of the state began to develop as a strategy in the US in the 1960s. It was aimed at the creation of certain preferences for racial minorities, blacks and other members of non-white race. It was expressed in the introduction of ethnic and racial quotas for admission to institutions of higher education and certain prestigious job positions. This strategy implies that the rights of the dominant majority are met in a natural way, as the culture of the majority is official and developed at the state level, while the rights of minorities are in a natural way infringed.
The policy of special measures (so-called affirmative action program), which is aimed to overcome inequality, social interleaving, has become a tradition in the United States. Affirmative action has acted as a means of eliminating negative discrimination. Various sources of affirmative action have been embodied in social life: constitutional provisions of the law, court orders, informal and volunteer programs, various strategies of positive discrimination for the private and public sectors, and mechanisms that forcibly implement measures of positive discrimination.
In Europe, the idea of positive discrimination in the context of national minorities appeared later and, above all, became popular in gender protection of women’s rights and prevention of prejudice in all fields.
The driving force of positive discrimination is twofold. Supporters of affirmative action believe that it helps increase to the limit the benefits of diversity in all sectors of society, as well as to compensate for the harm caused before or now by public, institutional or unintentional discrimination. Thus, the basic idea of positive discrimination is that society, which admitted or allowed discrimination of particular social, ethnic, and other minorities, should compensate the damage caused at the expense of the majority.
The idea of prevention of discrimination as well as compensation and equalization of rights brought to life the concept of positive discrimination.