On 21 March 1960, 69 anti-apartheid demonstrators were brutally murdered in Sharpeville, South Africa, in an event that became known as the Sharpeville Massacre. Apartheid was a legal system of systematic segregation and inequality based on skin colour, enforced by the government of South Africa from 1948 to 1990. Since 1966, the United Nations has officially recognised 21 March as the International Day for the Elimination of all Forms of Racial Discrimination. This year marks the 50th anniversary of the declaration of this International Day.

Every year around 21 March, the UNITED network coordinates the European-wide Action Week Against Racism and calls upon the international community to bring an end to racism, discrimination and intolerance. We urge NGOs, community organisations, schools, local councils and all manner of groups and individuals to join forces and confront racism with direct action. Whether by organising activities, supporting others, or spreading the message we encourage ourselves and others to stand hand in hand for diversity.

For more information on the UNITED campaign: