Uruguay plans affirmative measures for Afro-Descendents
22 November 2011
President Jose Mujica of Uruguay announced, during an international event in Brazil over the weekend in recognition of the Year of Afro-Descendants, that his government plans to introduce some “affirmative” measures/”positive discrimination” during 2012 to improve the position of the Afro-Descendant community in Uruguay. He also mentioned that, despite the role of the Afro-Descendant community in Uruguay’s long process towards democracy, there still exists discrimination in the workplace. A draft law, submitted by a member of parliament, is currently being studied and aims at reserving 10% of jobs in the public sector for qualified Afro-Descendents and also stipulating that a quota for bursaries be created for the different levels of education.
Uruguay has an active Afro-Descendant community that plays a constructive role in raising the awareness about the plight of Afro-Descendants in Uruguay. The Afro-Descendant community makes up about 10% of the total population of Uruguay. The Government has actively attended to the needs of the Afro-Descendant community, that is better integrated into society and on a higher socio-economic level than in most other countries, and this announcement on an international platform surely is significant and a further big step forward.
The Uruguayan Postal Services is also planning to issue a Mandela stamp to coincide with the year of Afro-Descendants. The Embassy is facilitating this in cooperation with the Nelson Mandela Foundation. Earlier this year the Uruguayan Foreign Minister co-hosted an event with the Embassy to mark the Year of the Afro-Descendants.
SA EMBASSY MONTEVIDEO, URUGUAY