Discrimination day is celebrated to end discrimination and promote tolerance, diversity and equality. People across the world are
discriminated against based on their religion, sexuality, gender, race, height, weight, profession, skin color, nationality and even if they succumb to certain diseases.
the Zero Discrimination Day in the year 2014 to
coincide with the World AIDS Day. It has been celebrated since then as a day
restricted to spread awareness about this facet of society and to encourage
‘Discrimination, prejudice and polarization should be replaced by unity in diversity, tolerance and equality, encouraging a more inclusive society.’
is prejudiced behavior towards people who belong to certain groups or situations, affecting their basic rights as a human being. It leads to the physical, emotional and socio-economic burden that can affect society as a whole.
People, who feel
discriminated against, feel a sense of insecurity and low self-esteem that can
affect their work, leading to lower productivity. The emotional scars that are
left behind may remain for years leading to aversion towards the perpetrators
of the prejudice.
conducted by Budhwani A and colleagues among racial minorities who settle in
the USA found that there existed a deep-seated depression among the ethnic minorities. This led to certain communities staying in
USA a lot less than they would have under more inclusive settings. The lowest
depression rates were witnessed among Afro-Caribbeans at 7% and Asians born
abroad at 8%. This is indicative of the psychological effects of discriminations
against racial groups.
On the other
hand, Anglin DM and colleagues found that racial and ethnic minorities who had
a strong affiliation with their ethnic group did not
suffer from psychosis associated with racial discrimination.
Discrimination against people with diseases like
and mental illness
should also be actively dissuaded to ensure that proper medical care is
available and sought out by the patient.
Coping with Discrimination
- Assess the Situation: Find out if the situation was indeed a case of discrimination
or if there was some misunderstanding.
- Gather Evidence: It is very important to gather evidence to support claims.
This will prevent the perpetrator from backtracking.
- Report an Issue: Be brave and report the misdeed to the highest authority that
you can get in touch with. Discrimination is a serious offense and nobody, however high up in the corporate ladder, is too
busy to address it.
- Control your Emotions: People who have been discriminated against feel a seething
anger that is not pacified easily. This could lead them to do something
that may not be appropriate to their standing or position. Speaking to a
trusted friend and letting out steam will help calm you down.
Students are among the most affected as far as discrimination is concerned. They are often left depressed
, under undue peer pressure and with a difficulty in concentrating. This forces them to quit school or to resort to suicidal tendencies
that have raised International concern.
Schools and colleges
now have psychologists who counsel such students and
help them cope with the discrimination. However, this rampant threat to basic
human rights should be weeded out at the source. Awareness and greater insights
into the plight of affected individuals and their potential in society will
help curb unfair polarization.