AHEAD of the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination on 21 March, Bridgend County Borough Council has pledged to condemn racism in all its forms.

The local authority is one of many across Wales to have signed the Zero Racism Wales pledge to show its commitment to building racial equality.

Individuals or organisations can sign up to the pledge, which is co-ordinated by Race Council Cymru and is supported by the Welsh Government and the Wales TUC.

This year’s International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, which is organised by the UN, has the theme ‘Youth standing up against racism’. Events will take place online with the aim of fostering a global culture of tolerance, equality and anti-discrimination.

The event is observed annually on the anniversary of the day police in Sharpeville, South Africa, opened fire and killed 69 people at a peaceful demonstration against apartheid ‘pass laws’ in 1960.

Mayor of Bridgend County Borough Kenneth Watts said: “Racism has no place in Bridgend County Borough and the council is proud to stand alongside other organisations in signing the Zero Racism Wales pledge.

“On March 21, we will come together united against racism, Islamophobia, anti-semitism and Fascism.”

Youth Mayor Megan Stone said: “I’m very pleased that the council has signed this pledge to reinforce its commitment to stamping out racism. I’m also glad that the activism of young people is being recognised by the theme of this year’s International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination – Youth standing up against racism. By working together, we can help to eradicate racism in the future.”

Councillor Dhanisha Patel, Cabinet Member for Wellbeing and Future Generations, said: “At Bridgend County Borough Council, we have a zero tolerance policy to racism across all our sectors and are therefore proud to have signed the pledge.

“As part of the pledge, we have committed to create, maintain and promote a community in which each person is treated fairly and equally irrespective of race, as well as a policy of equal opportunities in employment and service delivery.”

To mark the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, Race Council Cymru is holding a virtual launch for Zero Racism Wales at 12pm on March 21.

Visit the Race Council Cymru Facebook page to join in.

For more information about the pledge, visit the Zero Racism Wales website . For further details about International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, visit the UN website.