Racism in SA remains a blight on our country. Coupled with deep inequality and joblessness the fight against racism is one of our most urgent tasks. It is for this reason that Independent Media, Sekunjalo and clothing and textile union, SACTWU, have decided to join hands and embark on a comprehensive anti-racism campaign - "Racism, It stops with me." We, together with you, will endeavour to strike a fatal blow against racism. We aim to do this through concerted action to end this scourge.
Through our collective efforts we will ensure that all our platforms, titles and our voices are used to engage in education, action, and debate on how to end racism and white privilege. 2016 must be the year in which we stop just the talk and act against racism. While it is difficult to legislate behaviour change, the battle against racism starts with each one of us. We need to ensure zero tolerance for racist behaviour and create an enabling environment that will engender a non-racial, more inclusive and just South Africa.
"The time for merely talking about racism and equality in our country is over. We need decisive action and for all South Africans to be part of the long-term solution to combat racism. At Independent Media, we have consciously contributed to the development of our country by shining the spotlight on our country's burning issues and giving our readers in all sectors of society the platform to share their stories," said Dr Iqbal Survé, Executive Chairman of Independent Media and SIH.
"As a trade union with one of the racially most diverse membership profiles in the country, SACTWU wishes to be at the forefront of this anti-racism campaign. Often workers bear the brunt of racist attacks, in the workplace and generally in society. It is important that the ongoing scathing attacks on our human dignity be arrested, if we are to help prevent our country from facing an explosion of racial hatred. This cannot be good for socio-economic stability, nor for nation-building.
"The time has however arrived to dig deep into the roots of ongoing racism in our society. It can no longer just be glossed over.
"It requires that we examine, in a detailed manner, what practically must be done to help strengthen our institutions and our legal framework to empower them to deal decisively with racism." - Andre Kriel, General Secretary of SACTWU.
Since being taken over by a Sekunjalo-led consortium in 2013, Independent Media's national media platforms have sought to play a constructive role in highlighting South Africa's most pressing and burning issues and allowing for healthy debate across all sectors of society.
With the fight against all forms of racism in society a battle that is still clearly far from over, Independent Media, major business black economic empowerment leader, Sekunjalo, and one of the country's biggest trade unions, SACTWU, are taking a firm stand against racism.
The anti-racism campaign will be rolled out in Independent Media's 20 newspaper titles and digital platforms, with the media group also encouraging debate and discussion on numerous public platforms and in schools and universities around the country.
More comprehensive details of the campaign will be announced at a function coinciding with the State of the Nation Address on 11 February 2016, with regional anti-racism conferences scheduled this year in Cape Town, Durban and Johannesburg.
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