March 21, 2021
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The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is a day organised by the United Nations which aims to stop people being discriminated against because of their race.
When is International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination?
The International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination is held on the 21st March every year.
The event is held on this day because on the 21st of March, 1960, police opened fire and killed 69 people at a peaceful demonstration in Sharpeville, South Africa against the apartheid “pass laws”. Pass laws were an internal passport system that was designed by the South African government to prevent the freedom of movement of Black people. This controlled where people could work, live and travel inside the country.
Still today, our Black, Brown and Indigenous communities experience racism and discrimination. In addition, there has been a surge in anti-Asian racism and hate speech.
What Does the Word “Discrimination” Mean?
Discrimination is when someone is treated differently or unfairly based on a variety of things such as their beliefs, their skin colour, ethnicity, culture, whether they are a boy or girl and even how old they are.
What does the Word “Equality” Mean?
The idea that everyone in a society has the same rights and status. Although most countries strive for Equality, not many manage to achieve it. International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination focuses upon how working to put an end to racism is a step in the right direction to achieving Equality.
What Can We Do to Help Eliminate Racial Discrimination?
- Recognize and teach that no matter what our skin colour, accent, culture, the language we speak or where we are from, we are all equal and deserve the same rights and treatment.
- Make sure everyone feels included and welcome in any given situation.
- Encourage people to tell someone if they feel they are being discriminated against because of their race.
- If you see racism happening, call it out