requests the Special Rapporteur to reflect on associated racial discrimination experienced by families of persons with albinism and the appropriate response. This submission discusses persons with albinism in Africa as victims of racial discrimination; the sources, causes, forms and contemporary manifestation of such racial discrimination; the growing recognition of this racial discrimination at the international level and associated racial discrimination experienced by families of persons with albinism as an unresolved issue. Albinism definition & Statistics in Africa Albinism is a relatively rare, non-contagious, genetically inherited condition in which a person produces little to no melanin, resulting in little to no pigmentation, in the skin, hair and eyes. This lack of melanin often results in a pale or “white” appearance compared to other members of their family, community or ethnic group causing hypervisibility. In addition, the lack of melanin results in two congenital and permanent health conditions: visual impairment of varying degrees as well as high vulnerability to skin damage from ultraviolet rays, including skin cancer. Albinism affects people worldwide regardless of race, ethnicity or gender. Africa has one of the highest prevalence’s of persons with albinism in the world. The prevalence of persons with albinism on the continent varies from 1 person in 5,000 to 1 person in 15,000, with selected populations in Southern Africa having a prevalence of 1 person in 1,000. Multiple and intersecting discrimination The UN Independent Expert on the Enjoyment of Human Rights by Persons with Albinism reports show that people with albinism in Africa experience multiple and intersecting discrimination on the basis of their impairments (disability), colour gender and age.1 Whilst there is greater recognition of the discrimination faced by persons with albinism based on their disability, in particular their visual impairment and greater access to disability protection frameworks there is still relatively little appreciation of the racial discrimination experienced by persons with albinism. Racial discrimination against persons with albinism in Africa on the basis of colour Persons with albinism in Africa face discrimination stemming from their unusual appearance, in particular their colouring.2 Colour is a critical underlying factor at the heart of discrimination against persons with albinism on the continent. Oculocutaneous Albinism Type 2 (OCA2) is the most prevalent type of albinism on the African continent. UN Independent Expert on the Enjoyment of Human Rights by Persons with Albinism. Albinism Worldwide. U.N. Doc. A/74/190 (July 18, 2019) Relebohile Phatoli, Nontembeko Bila and Eleanor Ross, “Being black in a white skin: beliefs and stereotypes around albinism at a South African University”, in African Journal of Disability, vol. 4, No. l, (2015). 2 UN Independent Expert on the Enjoyment of Human Rights by Persons with Albinism. Applicable international human rights standards and related obligations addressing the issues faced by persons with albinism U.N. Doc. A/72/131 (14 July 2017) 1 2|Page

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