Don’t be divided – Stay UNITED!

European-wide Action Week Against Racism – 18-26 March 2017

The events of last year appear to show a Europe that is deeply divided. Divisions between rich and poor, young and old, minorities and majorities, are dominating headlines and having major effects on political processes. Rather than trying to heal these divides and work together towards a more equal and just society, populist and rightwing forces are seeking to increase these divisions and use them to their advantage. Divisive “us and them” rhetoric is threatening the foundation of our communities and the stability of our societies. As the European antiracist movement, we must stand together and call on the people of Europe: Don’t be divided, Stay UNITED!

Illustration: Coline Robin

21 March is the International Day for the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination, established by the General Assembly of the United Nations in 1966 following the brutal murder of 69 protestors in the South African township of Sharpeville in 1960. The massacre occurred during a protest against the apartheid laws of the South African government, a regime systematically enforcing racial inequality and segregation. Today racist murders and violence are still frequent and racial discrimination continues to be found at every level of our societies.

Every year around 21 March, the UNITED network coordinates the European-wide Action Week Against Racism and calls upon the international community to bring an end to racism, discrimination and intolerance. We urge NGOs, community organisations, schools, local councils and all manner of groups and individuals to join forces and confront racism with direct action. Whether by organising activities, supporting others, or spreading the message we encourage ourselves and others to stand hand in hand for diversity.

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