Following is UN Secretary-General António Guterres’ message for International Albinism Awareness Day, observed on 13 June:
Albinism is a genetic condition that affects people throughout the world, regardless of race, ethnicity or gender. Yet, tragically, people with albinism continue to suffer widespread discrimination, stigma and social exclusion. Very many, including children and women, are extremely vulnerable, isolated and subject to abuse and violence.
The endorsement of a regional action plan on albinism in Africa by the African Commission on Human and People’s Rights, as well as by the Pan African Parliament is a key step forward. But, much more can be done globally to raise awareness about the plight of people with albinism.
The 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development promises to leave no one behind. International Albinism Awareness Day is an opportunity to declare solidarity with people with albinism and strive together so those who are often left furthest behind are able to live free from discrimination and fear, and empowered to enjoy their full human rights.