What are the rights that everyone deserves
The German constitution is called the Basic Law. The Basic Law contains the most important legal and political rules of the Federal Republic of Germany. For example, the Basic Law states that Germany is a democratic state. That means: Everyone can take part in political life, for example in associations, initiatives, trade unions or parties.
The political parties have different programs and goals. The largest parties are called CDU (Christian Democratic Union), SPD (Social Democratic Party of Germany), Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen, FDP (Free Democratic Party) and Die Linke. The Pirate Party is a relatively new party. There are many other smaller parties.
© Goethe-Institut The Basic Law also includes the rights and obligations of people in Germany. Compulsory schooling is an important obligation: children and young people in Germany have to go to school. Then there is tax liability: whoever earns money has to pay taxes. And the duty to obey the law: everyone must obey the law.
And these are the most important rights:
Thehuman dignity: You have to have respect for everyone.
Theequal rights: All people have the same rights. For example, women and men have equal rights.
TheEquality before the law: All are equal before the law.
TheRight to freedom of expression: People are allowed to say what they think.
TheFreedom of assembly: People are allowed to meet in groups.
TheFreedom of movement: People can live and live wherever they want.
TheFreedom of occupation: People are free to choose their profession.
Further rights are theProtection of marriage and family, theSuffrageand theReligious freedom.
TheSuffragesays: The people in Germany are allowed to vote. And they can also be chosen. The elections must be secret, general and free. There are the European elections, the federal elections, the state elections and the local elections. All EU citizens who live in Germany can vote in the European and local elections. Usually that's 18 and over. In some federal states it is possible to vote in local elections from the age of 16. Only German citizens who are at least 18 years of age are allowed to vote in the state and federal elections. There are integration councils or integration advisory boards in many places. They are usually chosen by migrants. The integration councils work for the political interests of migrants. They also help with questions and problems. Through this work, they want to improve the coexistence of migrants and Germans.
© Goethe Institute
TheReligious freedomsays: Everyone can choose their religion freely and can practice it. About a third of the people in Germany officially have no religion. Most Germans belong to the Christian religion, so they are Roman Catholic or Protestant. Many Christian holidays like Christmas or Easter are public holidays. That means most people don't have to work on those days. But there are also many members of other religions living in Germany.
There are Protestant and Catholic religious instruction in schools. In some schools there are also Christian Orthodox, Jewish and Islamic religious instruction. Parents can decide whether their child should go to religious instruction. You also decide which religion class your child should attend.
In Germany, sexual orientation can be lived out openly. This means that same-sex love, bisexual, trans and intersexuality are just as much a part of everyday life as heterosexuality. The LGBTQ movement also plays an important role in Germany. This is the community of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer people. You are protected in Germany. For example, the symbol of the LGBT movement is the rainbow flag.
Since October 1, 2017, same-sex couples have been allowed to marry in Germany with all rights and obligations. This also means, for example, that they can adopt children like heterosexual couples if they meet the necessary requirements.
© Goethe Institute
When rights are not respected, in some cases it can be discrimination. Please refer to the section on our web portal.
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