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World Bank: Afro-descendants in Latin America achieve gains

Friday, August 31, 2018

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SAO PAULO, Brazil (AP) — Afro-descendants in Latin America have obtained important poverty-reduction gains over the past several years but more still must be done to achieve their full social and economic inclusion into society, the World Bank said in a new report.

The bank's report entitled “Afro-descendants in Latin America: Toward a Framework of Inclusion” was released Wednesday in Costa Rica.

According to the report, 133 million people in Latin America identify themselves as Afro-descendants, with most of them living in Brazil.

Together, Afro-descendants in Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Panama, Peru, and Uruguay represent 38 per cent of the total population, but about half of all the people living in extreme poverty, it says.

Afro-descendants, the report said, have less access to education, they are more often unemployed, and are underrepresented in both public and private decision-making positions.

But Afro-descendants have benefited from the broad reduction in poverty in the region over the last decade, the report said, adding that “over 50 per cent of Afro-descendant households were lifted out of poverty in Brazil and Uruguay, and more than 20 per cent of them in Ecuador and Peru.”

Addressing the causes of structural discrimination will be key to fighting injustice and creating opportunities for all,” said Jorge Familiar, World Bank Vice president for Latin America and Caribbean.

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