Racial inequality is continuing to hold the world back in the goal of defeating extreme poverty and its systemic causes; its effects can be felt in almost every facet of life including education, health, climate, economy, employability, and many more.
While February marks Black History Month in North America, the message of recognizing and uplifting people of color through their history and who they are today remains ever important across the globe and all year round.
Racism, bigotry, and discrimination are not limited within the borders of a single country or continent, they need to be addressed everywhere.
The question now is this: How do we go about addressing racism and racial inequality, so that we can entirely overcome them? What can we all do in our day-to-day lives to help?
We took this question to you, our incredible Global Citizens, to find out what one thing you think we can all do every day to help achieve racial equality — and your answers were nothing short of inspiring and empowering.
From Africa to Asia, to Latin America and across Europe, you took action with us by expressing what you believe could bring this form of inequality to a complete end. Our inbox was filled with responses that echoed powerful messages like “be kind” or "all should be treated equally", and “treat others as you would want to be treated.”
Crucial messages that the world needs to hear, and so that’s why we’ve decided to use this article to share your words with the world.
So read on to find out more about what Global Citizens worldwide have to say about what is needed to see a light at the end of the racial inequality tunnel.
1. Acknowledge Black History
Shakeeb R., United Kingdom
"Making people aware globally about the Black historical achievements, especially those that contributed to the progress of humanity as a whole, whether before or after the start of the dark slavery era, would be a great step in my opinion to create appreciation in their minds."
Lali M., South Africa
“Stop the sugarcoating and whitewashing of history. By teaching accurate history, mentioning the unsung heroes, not commemorating people and days that represent harm, chaos, and death.”
Nick H., Greece
"Acknowledge Black history. Assume our fair share of responsibility for it, and learn from our past mistakes."
2. Teach Younger Generations
Mikayla K., United States
"It all starts with education. By showing the younger generation the truths and struggles that communities and individuals faced, we could normalize talking about the dark parts of history. We need to normalize giving equal amounts of credit in our history to those who are not white."
Zulema S., United Kingdom
"Decrease racism across schools, teach people to be better from a young age."
Mehraj D., South Africa
"We are all human, so don't teach kids about racial classifications. Racism is not inherent. It is taught."
Jenna H., United States
"We need to stop white washing education. Many inspiring stories about Black people can be so beneficial to our youth, and incorporating them into schools is so important. There are also so many parts of history that are left out, simply because the education system didn't want to teach about good Black people. It's time for change."
3. Know There’s More to People Than Skin Color
Nicholas H., United States
"Do not treat people with a different skin color as someone different, they are the same as all of us."
Michelle C., Philippines
“Acknowledge the differences with great respect. It doesn't matter where we came from or the color of our skin. We are all beautiful people”
Michael A. G., South Africa
"...we must never take each other for granted no matter the color of the skin."
Aio D., United States
"Hire people based on their ability, not their skin color.”
Laisa S., Brazil
“Respect each other as equals.”
4. Be Kind and Considerate of All
Ay Y., Japan
“Be kind and treat everyone with respect and dignity."
Millie C., France
"Stand up for those around you. If you witness something that you strongly believe is wrong, then act. Without everyone's participation, willingness, and kindness, nothing will change.”
Christopher G., United Kingdom
"I think we should all make a concerted effort to be kind and considerate to one another. No matter what race or religion we follow, no matter what the color of our skin is, let us all make a chance to encourage love and peace to everyone in every country in the world. There is no reason for anyone to hate another person just because of the color of their skin. We should all be kind and considerate to one another."
Luna G., United States
"All is possible with just a little bit of kindness"
Olawale A., Nigeria
"A life full of humanitarian love will permit universal peace-building and gradually take away global racial discrimination.”
5. Use Your Democratic Right to Vote
Emily B., United States
“To make racial equality a reality we have to elect more progressive officials to office and push for legislation on equality and civil rights.”
Jennifer G., United States
“Support people of color in seeking public office.”
6. Support Black Businesses
Sisiballo K., South Africa
“Promote Black businesses and ensure inclusivity of Black people in all areas of life.”
Rekha J., France
“Support small Black businesses, instead of always buying from big shopping centers.”
Sky O., United States
“I think we should listen to Black voices, buy from Black businesses, and know how to be proper allies.”
You can join the movement of Global Citizens around the world campaigning to Demand Equity this month and every month. Join us and start taking action now to help ensure the human rights laid out in the UN’s Global Goals to end extreme poverty are achieved for all people, everywhere.