Affirmative action measures are quite controversial because they reflect different versions of the right to equality, taking as a premise equal treatment of people in the same situation and unequal treatment of people who are not in a situation of legal social balance. The latter is the principle that gives rise to affirmative action. Affirmative action is based on the uniform value of every life – the ethical basis from the impersonal point of view. The analysis includes the obstacles to the implementation and development of these measures in the chosen countries, using a comparative perspective in order to reach an overall assessment about the effectiveness of these actions in realising equality through mechanisms that seek to break the cultural patterns that harm and impede the advancement of specific groups. The chapter concludes with a suggestion of another measure, mainstreaming equality, which can complement affirmative action measures in working towards more equality in practice.