Every year, March 1st celebrates ‘’Zero Discrimination Day’’, the right of all people to live a full and productive life with dignity and without discrimination. It was first celebrated on March 1, 2014, and was launched by the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS)´ Executive Director in Beijing after the organization launched its Zero Discrimination Campaign on World AIDS Day in December 2013 by UNAIDS Director Michel Sidibé. Inspired by World AIDS Day, a holiday combating intolerance towards those living with HIV/AIDS, Zero Discrimination Day was observed to end the stigma and unfair behavior toward different people.
The United Nations has promoted this cause by arranging various events and designing campaigns that celebrate human life and the freedom to live it with honor and dignity, irrespective of gender, race, religion, color, nationality, disabilities, and profession eliminates laws that harm, create laws that empower,” has been a slogan of UNAIDS to highlight the imperative of taking action against discriminatory laws. In many countries, those laws result in people being treated differently, excluded from essential services or unfairly restricted in how they can lead their lives just because of who they are, what they do or who they love.
The symbol of Zero Discrimination Day is a butterfly which illustrates that discrimination, based on sexual orientation, income, gender, colour, religion, health status, gender, religion, age and many other factors, exists all over the world and it is an issue that every society has to cope with.
The primary goal of the celebration is to promote and advance inclusive policies in both political, economic and social spheres, and allow people to live in human dignity, as enshrined in Article 7 of the UN Human Rights Charter.
UNAIDS has announced that this year’s theme is ‘Saving lives: Decriminalise’ and they are highlighting how decriminalization of key populations, people living with HIV, saves lives and helps advance the end of the AIDS pandemic.
One can observe zero discrimination day by celebrating all the wonderful people in one’s life, whose differences are the things that make them so beautiful and unique, researching the impact that inequality has on others, organizing a seminar or host a discussion on discrimination, uncover what can be done to end it with people from your community, participating in events that are taking place in one’s district and signing up as a volunteer or go as an attendant.
Zero discrimination day is significant because of the difference people can make to eradicate the racial injustice or any other problem and the awareness for those who are victims if discrimination.