For Immediate Release: November 3, 2015-The United Nations will host a Historical Civil Rights Event.

On the occasion of the United Nations International Decade for People of African Descent, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights invites, with the co-sponsorship of the Unitarian Universalist Association, the United Nations Department of Public Information, UNESCO, the Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie, Black Lives Matters Initiative, and Amnesty International USA, to a special event on:


Confronting the Silence: Perspectives and Dialogue on Structural Racism against People of African Descent Worldwide

Tuesday, 3 November 2015 UN Secretariat Conference Building, ECOSOC Chamber


1.30 p.m. – 3.30 p.m. To attend, R.S.V.P. here:
The UN General Assembly proclaimed 2015-2024 as the International Decade for People of African Descent (resolution 68/237) with the theme “People of African descent: recognition, justice and development”. At the centre of this initiative is the promotion and protection of all human rights of people of African descent, the improvement of their well-being and the recognition of their culture, history and contribution to societies. The General Assembly also endorsed a programme of activities (resolution 69/16) which is to be implemented by all the relevant actors, including the United Nations, Members States, regional and subregional organisations, civil society actors, including organizations of people of African descent. The Decade and its programme of activities are an integral part of the full and effective implementation of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action. As such all the relevant actors are expected through the effective observance and implementation of the Decade to further advance the anti-racism agenda as defined inter alia in the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action, its Outcome document and political declaration, and the International Convention for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.

The main objective of the event is to discuss and exchange views on the causes and manifestations of structural and institutionalized discrimination against people of African descent, and to brainstorm on how to take advantage of the International Decade to tackle structural racism against people of African descent and achieve justice and the equal enjoyment of human rights for all in line with international human rights standards and the practice of the relevant human rights mechanisms.

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Welcoming remarks


Mr. Ivan Šimonović, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights 

Video messages

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Jordan's Zeid Raad al-Hussein speaks during a news conference at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva, Switzerland, Thursday, Oct. 16, 2014. Zeid drew comparisons between the Ebola outbreak and the Islamic State group Thursday, labeling them

U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights Jordan’s Zeid Raad al-Hussein speaks during a news conference at the European headquarters of the United Nations in Geneva. (AP Photo/Keystone, Martial Trezzini)

Mr. Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights


Ms. Michaelle Jean, Secretary-General, Organisation Internationale de la Francophonie

Keynote speakers


Mr. Harry Belafonte, UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador

Ms. Mireille Fanon-Mendes-France, Chairperson, Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent

Mr. Mutuma Ruteere, Special Rapporteur on Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance

Panel discussion International perspective:

Ms. Gay McDougall, Member-elect, Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

Latin American and Caribbean perspective:

Ms. Cheryl Sterling, Ph.D., Director, Black Studies Program, The City College of New York


Ms. Ramona Hernández, Ph.D., Director, CUNY Dominican Studies Institute & Professor of Sociology, The City College of New York

North American perspective:


Ms. Alicia Garza, Black Lives Matter Founder 


Mr. Steven W. Hawkins, Executive Director, Amnesty International USA


Ms. Samaria Rice, Mother of Tamir Rice who was fatally shot by police as a 12-year-old

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Mr. John H. Crawford Jr., Father of John Crawford III who was fatally shot by police in Walmart

Ms. Nicole C. Lee, Mothers Against Police Brutality.

European perspective:        

Mr. Christian Ahlund, Chair, European Commission against Racism and Intolerance



Mr. Bruce Knotts, Director, Unitarian Universalist Association United Nations Office



Although some progress has been made at the national, regional and international levels to prevent and eliminate racism against people of African descent, important challenges remain worldwide that reveal deep-rooted structural racism and racial discrimination against people of African descent. Indeed, structural discrimination is still a reality in the daily life of a number of people of African descent. They continue to experience its pervasive and disproportionate effects as a result of the historical injustices and grave human rights violations they have suffered including, among others, slavery and racial segregation. Whether as descendants of the victims of the transatlantic slave trade or as more recent migrants, people of African descent throughout the world are among the poorest of the poor; they usually face racial discrimination in their access to fundamental rights including quality and high education as well as employment. Moreover, the social recognition and valuation of their ethnic and cultural diversity is limited. Their level of participation and representation in political and institutional decision-making processes is sometimes inexistent. In the administration and functioning of the criminal justice system they often have unequal access to justice, their presence in prisons is disproportionately high and they are often sentenced to harsher penalties. In addition they are discriminated against by the police or other law enforcement agencies and officials, whether by being the victims of alarmingly high rates of police violence and use of excessive force, as well as racial and ethnic profiling practices.


Mr. Bruce Knotts, Director, Unitarian Universalist Association United Nations Office

Mr. Gregg L Greer, President, Freedom First International

Mr. Jonathan Abady, Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady LLC

Mia Thornton, Unitarian Universalist Association 

Anne Francois, Office and Intern Coordinator United Nations Office


Special Invited Guest

Wayne Meisel, Founder of AmeriCorps

Andrew Sr. and Deanna Joseph  (Parents of Andrew Joseph III)

Gwen Car (Mother of Eric Gardner)




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This event is open to all Member States, civil society representatives, the media and the general public.

Live webcast


About oneworld01

As a public speaker and minister, Gregg L. Greer has lectured on multiculturalism, building civic responsibility, the life of Dr. King, civil rights, Aids (HIV) in Communities, American politics and civic engagement, leadership, social activism, redefining American manhood, and being Black and male in America, among other topics, at community centers, religious institutions, conferences, as well as in corporate settings Gregg Greer has taught, mentored, in schools, camps, prisons, and on the streets of Urban America. He is an outspoken critic of Economic Oppression, Genocide, and the Death penalty Furthermore, Greer routinely offers his insights on a variety of matters, to, radio, newspaper, magazine, and internet outlets globally. As a internationally known civil rights leader -Greer believes and follows the personal example of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, The SCLC's Founder “I believe Faith and Social Leadership are two powerful combinations and valuable tools for social change.” Says Greer. My work within the Christian community is never-ending, and highly engaged. This blog is another way to connect, and gain valuable perspective. Our Motto is simple: “ Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where evil, and ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is in an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob, and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe. Speech, April 1886 Frederick Douglas One World means we each occupy this one earth, to live, and abide by the laws that govern society as a whole. We encourage all like-minded individuals to join us, and to dialog. If you are interested in writing for us or have a story, please email editorial at Peace and Love, G.Greer
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2 Responses to For Immediate Release: November 3, 2015-The United Nations will host a Historical Civil Rights Event.

  1. The comment I want to make is that this amazing there has not been any televising of this conference but being on Google+ Andrew Josephs story came up so I published it on Google+ until now I want to see how the first day went maybe you will have it on c-span hopefully thank God for the recognition and God bless all

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