Switzerland has a critical systemic drawback with racism in opposition to individuals of African descent, in keeping with a report offered to the U.N. Human Rights Council on Monday, giving a broad vary of examples from police brutality to a kids’s sport.
The U.N.-appointed working group famous constructive measures taken by Switzerland however nonetheless voiced issues in regards to the prevalence of racial discrimination and highlighted a number of incidents following a go to to the nation this yr.
“The ubiquity and impunity of this misconduct signifies a critical systemic drawback exists,” it mentioned.
Switzerland’s ambassador to the U.N. in Geneva broadly accepted the findings in feedback to the council, though questioned the consultants’ use of a restricted variety of examples to attract wider conclusions.
Landlocked Switzerland was by no means a colonial energy however its banks, merchants and municipalities invested closely and benefited from the transatlantic triangular commerce, the report mentioned.
It famous efforts to boost public consciousness about elements of Swiss historical past, similar to a petition and debate across the removing of the statue of a banker whose fortune relied on exploitation of enslaved Africans, within the canton of Neuchatel.
Nonetheless, others remained valorized similar to Louis Agassiz, an advocate of scientific racism, who has an Alpine peak named after him.
Swiss playground video games persist similar to “Who’s afraid of the Black man?” which have a racially discriminatory impact, the consultants mentioned.
The report additionally famous “stunning” police brutality, noting the deaths of a number of Black males within the Vaud canton.
“Switzerland agrees together with your commentary that racism and racial discrimination — together with in opposition to individuals of African descent — are issues that should be tackled as a matter of urgency,” Jurg Lauber advised the Geneva-based Human Rights Council on Monday.
He careworn that new measures had been carried out to deal with the problems, together with cantonal session facilities for victims of racial discrimination and pointing to enhancements in police coaching packages.