This new anti-racism campaign from Australia, which was launched yesterday, isn’t the common fight against racism. It is about the threat to public health racism can be. A range of health problems including high blood pressure and heart disease, depression, anxiety, low birth rate and premature birth can all be caused directly by people’s personal experiences of racism.
This campaign is calling on all Australians to take action against racism and tackle the Indigenous health crisis. It is a initiative of ANTaR (Australians for Native Title and Reconciliation) in collaboration with The Body Shop.
Racism, as a direct and negative influence on health, helps explain in part the Australian Indigenous health crisis. Appallingly, three out of four Indigenous Australians experience racism in their everyday lives.
‘It is vital that individuals in Australia have the information and resources to tackle racism in their community’ said Gary Highland, ANTaR National Director.
‘Standing up to racist attitudes in workplaces, schools and family is a fundamental step in overcoming the Indigenous health crisis in Australia.’
‘There is a 17-year gap in life expectancy between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Australians. Improved healthcare alone may not close this gap, unless positive changes occur in attitudes and behaviour towards Indigenous Australians’ Mr Highland said.
Part of the campaign is the ‘Racism makes me sick’ quiz which you can add either to your website or to your Facebook page.
ANTaR is a non-government, not-for-profit community-based organisation that has been working in partnership with Indigenous communities and organisations on reconciliation and Indigenous rights initiatives since 1997.