Why is racism a problem?

Racism causes harm to those who are on the receiving end. It hurts individuals, communities and our society at large.

Studies show that experiencing racism has profound effects on people’s health and welfare. The effects can include feelings of sadness and anger, even anxiety and depression. The regular experience of racism can lead to people withdrawing from work or study, and diminish their quality of life.

It can also hurt people’s freedom and dignity. Those who endure racism can be made to feel they have less freedom, or are second-class citizens.

In a diverse country such as Australia, the effects of racism aren’t confined to individuals. It has the potential to affect all of us. Racial hostility creates a society where people don’t trust and respect each other. It challenges our society’s values of equality and fairness.

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