Europe: First EU week dedicated to People of African Descent
From 14 to 16 May 2018, the European Parliament will be hosting EU's first ever People of African Descent Week. In times when People of African Descent (PAD) are increasingly confronted with racial prejudice, discrimination and Afrophobia, this is a key initiative to raise awareness on the 15 million people of African descent living in Europe and to discuss solutions to address the difficulties and violence they face.
The Week is starting with a hearing recognising contributions People of African Descent have made to Europe and addressing how EU institutions, Member States, civil society and the private sector can ensure the full participation and equal treatment of African descent populations in Europe.
The following 2 days will include roundtables, policy discussions and a forum on a variety of topics including:
- the place of PAD in the European consciousness and they portrayal in cultural institutions;
- PAD in European criminal justice systems and how they are disproportionately victims of discriminatory treatment by law enforcement, such as hate crimes and racial profiling
- an exchange on the need for a diverse and inclusive growth of global digital platforms
- PAD's experiences at borders and in their host countries (disparities in processing asylum, work visas and citizenship, as well as in integration outcomes)
The week will end with the screening of episode 3 and 4 of Slavery Routes, followed by a discussion with filmmaker Daniel Cattier. This new series presents a global view of the history of the slave trade from the 7th Century to the present day. During this period, more than 20 million Africans have been deported, sold and reduced to slavery. The film addresses the fundamental question: How did Africa find itself at the heart of the slave routes?
PAD Week is a joint initiative of the European Parliament Anti-Racism and Diversity Intergroup (ARDI), Transatlantic Minority Political Leadership Conference (TMPLC), community-based project Each One Teach One (EOTO), and the European Network Against Racism (ENAR). MEP Cecile Kyenge is one of its honorary host and the speakers list include other PAD such as Swedish Parliamentarian Momodou Malcolm Jallow, U.S. Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe (Helsinki Commission) Dr. Mischa Thompson, French Journalist and anti-racism activist Rokhaya Diallo, and researcher on digital inequalities and e-inclusion Dana Schurmans.