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  • monicasemedo6

I believe we can live in a society that fully embraces diversity and where this diversity is represented.

European Parliament's Anti-Racism Week 2024


The European Parliament Anti-Racism and Diversity Intergroup (ARDI) and ENAR organised the Anti-Racism and Discrimination Week 2024 where I was glad to attend as guest speaker.

 

In a time of rising racism and xenophobia, it is vital to build strong cross-party alliances that uphold EU values, and it is vital that we tackle racism and discrimination – be it in the EU institutions, in European society and beyond, and secondly, to promote diversity positively.

 

Why does this event matter? Experiences of racial discrimination increased in the EU reaching as high as 77%. [Being Black in the EU report]

 

We need to evolve to an intersectional approach to racism and discrimination. For example, Muslim women wearing the hijab, women with disabilities, LGBTQI+ refugees can experience discrimination in qualitatively different ways as their male, white and non-disabled counterparts. So they can suffer discrimination for more than one reason.

 

An intersectional approach goes beyond the individual level towards a structural level and anti-discrimination laws need to follow that path. There are multiple identities so we cannot take a single-issue approach. 



 

Representation matters.

Members of the European Parliament are directly elected you, citizens to represent you accordingly, so they should reflect our societies. Only 4% MEPS are non-Caucasian, it should be at least a 10% (of 705 MEPs). So we need you to stand for elections! People of African descent and any other minority ethnic must see themselves capable to do it. I was reached by the then Luxembourg’s PM to run for the EU elections 2019. He offered to me the opportunity and I took it.

 

But if you care about politics, if you care about social justice, if you care for a fairer and more inclusive Europe, do not wait for someone to call you to stand for elections, just do it!

 

We need a change of mindset in society – this won’t happen overnight and will take hard work to achieve, but I believe we can have a society that embraces diversity and where this diversity is represented.

 

But to achieve that, to know how to better work on more rights and the needs of non-Caucasian Europeans, we need data. Due to divergent classification and census systems across EU member states, we do not have a complete overview of how many citizens are there of each ethnic minority. If you do not see candidates reflecting your origins, at least check with parties will defend your interests. Every vote counts!.


I welcome the ARDI the Manifesto signed today and I hope upcoming Members are as committed to the fight against racism and discrimination as we are, and have been during this mandate. I commit to do necessary work within my Group to ensure the support for this important cause as much as much as possible.



 

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