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W.K. Kellogg Foundation statement on International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

BATTLE CREEK, Mich. – The W.K. Kellogg Foundation issued the following statement about the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and the Need for World Leaders to Unify our World and Create Equitable Opportunities for All Children and Families.

This week was the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, coordinated by the United Nations, which serves to turn the world’s eyes toward the need to end discrimination.  This year’s theme, “Racism & Sports,” was chosen to highlight the problem of racism in sports across the globe, as well as to raise awareness of the role sports can play in combating racism and racial discrimination. And while we acknowledge that sports can both incite and combat racial discrimination, we have seen through our own America Healing investments – designed to foster racial healing, dismantle structural inequities and overcome unconscious bias – that racism impacts all sectors of society. 

Although our world has made great strides in creating a more just society, structural, but often hidden or unconscious racial biases, continue to prevent too many children of color from reaching their full potential. The racial disparities we see in education, health and financial security stem in large part from these biases.

Today, Sen. Ben Cardin (D-Md.) issued a call to global leaders to “do more” to address discrimination and publicly announced his support of the “creation of a global fund to fight intolerance and foster inclusion.”  We applaud the idea of a global fund.  We believe that global leaders and the institutions they represent have an obligation to create opportunities to foster public discourse that acknowledges past injustices visited upon communities due to beliefs in racial hierarchy and its constructs of privilege, rights and entitlement. This dialogue also must present pathways to addressing inequitable outcomes for these communities in the future.

To succeed in the long-term, there must be a solemn commitment by one and all to this work, to unifying our planet, to rejecting racism, to finding strength not resentment in our differences. Our children and their collective futures are at stake. We call on our global leaders to demonstrate the courage and commitment to build a more equitable and just world for all children of every color, across cultures and across nations.  

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