United States and Brazil Collaborate on Racial Equality

Media Note
Washington, DC
May 18, 2010

The Department of State’s Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs will host a conference of the U.S-Brazil Joint Action Plan to Eliminate Racial and Ethnic Discrimination and Promote Equality on May 20-21, 2010, at Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA.

The two-day Joint Action Plan conference, “A Call to Action,” will bring U.S. and Brazilian government, civil society, and private sector representatives together using an engaging and interactive format. Participants will discuss key issues in racial equality, including economic empowerment and labor, health concerns, environmental justice, civil rights and education, and racial equality in the justice system.

Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Arturo Valenzuela will lead the U.S. delegation and Brazil’s Ambassador to the U.S. Mauro Vieira and Minister for the Promotion of Racial Equality Elói Ferreira de Araújo will head the Brazilian delegation.

The following events are open for press coverage.

Digital Town Hall – May 21, 9:30-11:00 a.m., Leadership Center Auditorium
U.S. and Brazilian media personalities and experts will take questions onsite and online about “How the Media Shapes our Views on Race.” Immediately following the Digital Town Hall, actor Hill Harper and Bernice King, the daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Brazilian panelists Paulo Rogério and Juliana Cézar will be available to take questions from the press.

Streamed online in Portuguese at https://statedept.connectsolutions.com/tolerance
Pre-set time for cameras is 8:30 a.m. Final access time for writers and stills is 9:00 a.m.

Press Availability – May 21, 3:15-3:45 p.m., Leadership Center, Ground Floor Meeting Room
Participants: U.S. Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs Arturo Valenzuela; U.S. Ambassador to Brazil Thomas Shannon; Brazilian Minister for the Promotion of Racial Equality Elói Ferreira de Araújo; and Brazil’s Consul General in Atlanta, Ambassador Adalnio Senna Ganem.

Pre-set time for cameras is 2:45 p.m. Final access time for writers and stills is 3:00 p.m.


Economic Empowerment – May 20, 9:30-10:30 a.m., Leadership Center Meeting Room
Speakers: Jacqueline A. Barrien, EEOC Chair; William Lucy, Intl. Secretary-Treasurer, AFSCME; Martvs das Chagas, Secretary of Affirmative Action, SEPPIR

Environmental Justice – May 20, 12:20-1:30 p.m., Leadership Center Main Meeting Room
Keynote Address: EPA Assistant Administrator for International Affairs, Michelle J. DePass
Panel: 1:30-2:30 p.m., Room 238/240
Speakers: Jessy Tolkan, Political Director, Green for All; Prof. Robert Bullard, Environmental Justice Research Center, Clark Atlanta University; Brazilian Deputy, Edson Santos; Moderator: Lisa Garcia, Senior Advisor, EPA

Civil Rights & Education – May 21, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., Leadership Center Meeting Room
Speakers: Russlynn Ali, Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights; Dr. Beverly Tatum, President of Spelman College; Leonor Araújo, MEC

Access to the Justice System – May 21, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 pm, Leadership Center Room 238/240
Speakers: Brent Gray, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Atlanta; Jorge da Silva, Professor, State University of Rio de Janeiro; Moderator: Julissa Reynoso, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State

Media representatives may attend these events upon presentation of one of the following: (1) a U.S. Government-issued identification card (Department of State, White House, Congress, Department of Defense or Foreign Press Center), (2) a media-issued photo identification card, or (3) a letter from their employer on letterhead verifying their employment as a journalist, accompanied by an official photo identification card (driver's license, passport). Media should park on Welborn Street and check in at the registration table outside the main meeting room on the ground floor of the Leadership Center. Campus Map

Signed in March 2008, the U.S.-Brazil Joint Action Plan recognizes that Brazil and the United States are multi-ethnic, multi-racial democracies whose ties of friendship are strengthened by shared experiences. The Joint Action Plan pledges an ever-deepening and ongoing collaboration between the two governments to eliminate racial and ethnic discrimination and promote equality of opportunity in both countries. Visit //2009-2017.state.gov/p/wha/rt/japer/ for more information about the U.S. – Brazil Joint Action Plan.

Erica Marrero
Office of International Information Programs
U.S. Department of State
Cell: 860-617-7277

Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs
U.S. Department of State

PRN: 2010/643