Commemoration of the 184th anniversary of the Abolition of Slavery Act in the British Empire

Countries in both Africa and the Caribbean, which have been or remain British colonies, commemorate Emancipation Day every August 1st, remembering the passing in 1834 of the Act for the Abolition of Slavery in the British Empire and all its colonies.

That document did not bring about the liberation of slaves or reparations for the victims, which, in fact, is still not a reality today. In fact, the document committed a payment of 20 million pounds to compensate slave owners and, if that was not enough, it established that the slaves themselves would pay 27 million pounds to their owners and, if they wanted to be emancipated, to pay 50% of their emancipation. Pay to be free.

The payment was so large that it was only in 2015 that the Caribbean peoples managed to complete it. From that moment until today, the British colonies in the Caribbean have been demanding the return of this amount. A Reparations Commission, formed by the Caribbean countries, has been working since 2013 to achieve the repayment of the entire amount paid, among other actions of reparation to the victims.

The traces of slavery continue in the contemporary world and one of its expressions is racism. According to statements by the UN Special Rapporteur on Racism and Xenophobia: “the hostile climate applies not only to irregular migrants, but also to racial and ethnic minorities in regular status, as well as to many British citizens who have been recognised as citizens since colonial times”.

Pressenza IPA