Today, March 1st, the Caribbean Research Empowerment Network joins with the United Nations and the global community in commemorating Zero Discrimination Day. Discrimination is a violation of human rights. It is immoral, hurtful and dehumanizing. For the month of March, our discussions will focus on the theme of "Tolerance and respect" and ways in which we can foster a culture of tolerance and respect in the Caribbean and around the globe.
The United Nations also globally recognises March 8th as International Women's Day, March 21st as International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and World Down Syndrome Day and March 24th as International Day for the Right to the Truth concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims. More than 65 years after the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, discrimination based on age, gender, race, ability and sexual orientation still affects our societies. As we join with the international community in recognising the significance of each of these days, it is our chance to celebrate diversity and come together for tolerance and inclusion in the Caribbean.
"Discrimination can happen anywhere: at the health-care facility, at work, at school, at home and in the community. Discrimination doesn’t just hurt individuals or groups of people—it hurts everyone.
- Discriminating against people on the basis of their race causes individual suffering and weakens social cohesion.
- Limiting the chances of girls and young women to get a proper education harms not only individual life chances but prevents societies benefiting from a deeper pool of talent.
- Stigmatising people living with HIV discourages people from getting tested and receiving life-saving health care and treatment.
- There are many ways to counter discrimination and encourage acceptance: standing out and speaking up when something is wrong, raising awareness, supporting people who have been discriminated against and promoting the benefits of diversity."
Source: Stand Out - Zero Discrimination Day 2016
What will you do to support Zero Discrimination Day?
Share your stories in the Message Forums or leave us a comment. We look forward to hearing about your experiences across the Caribbean we all come together to reject discrimination and support inclusion in our communities.
The CREN Team