A/74/274: The role of negative racial stereotypes of people of African descent in perpetuating racial injustice – report
15 August 2019
People of African descent
The legacy of racial stereotypes and negative characterizations of people of African descent, which were created to justify the enslavement of Africans, continue today. Racial stereotypes have evolved, transforming society, and continue to harm people of African descent and violate their human rights.
With globalization, the need for the development of a robust human rights framework, including mechanisms specifically to deal with racism, has arisen. Legally cognizable claims of racial injustice have frequently elicited explicit condemnation. However, insufficient attention has been given to addressing racial bias and stereotyping, which are root causes of discrimination. These are evident in many fields, including the criminal justice system, health, education, employment and housing, and are measurable in terms of entrenched racial disparities.
In the present report, the Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent looks at the role of negative racial stereotypes and the stereotyping of people of African descent in perpetuating racially biased decision-making, racial disparities and racial injustice. The Working Group reviews the historical use and ongoing prevalence of racial stereotypes and racial stereotyping in everyday life, including in advertisements, the media, social media, the criminal justice system and elsewhere. In many areas throughout society, we continue to witness the denigration of people of African descent, as well as the impulse to control black bodies that is licensed by the imagery we see and tolerate. The report concludes with recommendations to address racial bias and stereotyping of people of African descent.
Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent