Study to help stop 'racism pandemic'

Researchers at The Australian National University (ANU) are calling on people around the world to take part in the biggest ever study into helping understand and reduce prejudice.

It comes as The Australian Human Rights Commission reports a spike in racial discrimination complaints linked to COVID-19.

Lead researcher Professor Michael Platow, from ANU, is leading The Prejudice Census - which asks people to record their experiences of racism. He said COVID-19 has allowed racism to thrive.

"Coronavirus is enabling a prejudice pandemic. The racism it is enabling is also life threatening," said Professor Platow.

"It is not just happening in Australia, there is a likelihood that COVID-19 will serve as a rationale for racism around the world."

The researcher is calling for action in the field of social psychology to mirror the scientific efforts to help stop the COVID-19 pandemic.

"This project is more vital than ever and it is important to collect this data when there are threats to life and liberty," said Professor Platow.

"People can record their experiences of racism if they are the victim, perpetrator or witness.

"We want to know what people are experiencing. When we understand more about these experiences it helps us fight them."

The Prejudice Census is based in the Research School of Psychology at The Australian National University and funded by an ARC Discovery grant.

People can take part in the Prejudice Census here -

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