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Rooting out racism in Europe requires action, not just words

Date

10 Nov 2022

Sections

Global Europe

Today, the Socialists and Democrats lead the debate and vote on the European Parliament’s first comprehensive report on racial justice, non-discrimination and anti-racism.

The report written by S&D MEP, Evin Incir, comes at a time when racism is on the rise in Europe. In Hungary in July, Prime Minister Viktor Orbán made an abhorrent speech criticising the “mixing” of European and non-European races. Last week in France, a far right MP was temporarily suspended from the National Assembly after shouting “Go back to Africa” when a black MP was speaking during a debate on migration.

The report stresses the importance of going beyond interpersonal racism and discrimination to address structural racism in society. It urges the Commission to ensure that the historic action plan is prolonged to post 2025 and demands member states to come up with ambitious action plans to tackle racism before the end of 2022. National action plans, which only 12 member states currently have in place, need to go beyond words and should include follow-up mechanisms that deliver tangible and concrete actions on the ground. The S&D Group also salutes the continuous efforts from PES Commissioner Helena Dalli to tackle racism, including structural and institutional racism, in all of its forms in the EU.

Evin Incir, S&D MEP and author of the Parliament’s first anti-racism report said:

"Racism is on the rise in all around the European Union. If we do not act, we give racism fertile ground to grow and spread. Racism is not an opinion. It is a human rights violation.

"It is no coincidence that rising levels of racism are accompanied by the rise of the far right in power in Europe, be it in Italy, Hungary or Sweden. We condemn the far right for its racist discourse, for its scapegoating of religious and ethnic minorities and for trying to polarise our societies and divide communities. Now more than ever, we need to be extra vigilant to ensure everyone in our society can have the same opportunities in the labour market, justice and education. Racism kills, deprives people of their human rights and it prevents society being able to benefit from all our citizens competences and experience.

"By moving from words to real action, the EU can really make a difference, and root out racism and discrimination, as well as deliver justice for all people in our Union. It is time to fully implement the EU’s motto “United in diversity”.

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