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Reslife: International Day of Tolerance

By FLlj 16 Nov 2020


Where there is difference we can choose to accept or challenge. There is so much diversity in the world; racial, religious, cultural and language are only a few. Tolerance is a key part of fostering peace and community globally and with the people around us. It makes it possible for us to coexist with others peacefully and allow people to lead their lives the way they wish.


As well as helping others live peacefully, it also allows us to grow personally, through learning  about different ways of thinking and how people live.

Tolerance, however, does not always come easy; the definition of tolerance is includes the word ability to tolerate but also the willingness. We have to choose to be tolerant, it may not always come automatically.

When we are tolerant we help people feel valued and respected. It’s about more than ignoring peoples differences. Everyone has their own beliefs and opinions and its better for everyone if we seek to understand our differences rather than pretend they don’t exist.

What is the international day of tolerance

On the 16th of November 1995 UNESCO adopted the Declaration of Principles on Tolerance. On this day we celebrate the values of tolerance and try and educate others about how we can embody it.

How we can be more tolerant to people

1) Listen carefully without jumping to conclusions & try to understand the others point of view

So often in a conversation we can find ourselves just waiting for our own turn to speak so we can tell the person why they’re wrong and we’re right. This hardly ever leads to a fruitful conversation and can even turn into heated arguments. When we’re having a conversation where the other person is expressing opinions different to our own, we should intently listen and truly try and understand where the other person is coming from. If we listen rather than assume and argue against, we can gain a lot of insight into people who are different to us.

Ask questions like: “okay, tell me more about that. What makes you feel this way?”


2) Try to empathize

we are all human beings, but sometimes it’s so easy to forget this. Trying to see things from another person’s perspective can help is empathize with them and connect with their fellow humanity.  Remembering the things we have in common as well as the things that make us different.


3) Educate yourself and value difference.

Being more open-minded and exposing yourself to views and cultures that are different from your own.

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Intolerance and hate crime
Intolerance is the unwillingness to accept views, beliefs, or behaviour that differ from one’s own. Intolerance grows out of fear and ignorance towards things we don’t understand and can manifest itself as racism, xenophobia, anti-Semitism, islamophobia, sexism, and homophobia. When tolerance isn’t demonstrated by people, and when people harass or victimise people based on their differences this can be classed as a hate crime.

A hate crime is any criminal offence which is perceived by the victim or any other person, to be motivated by hostility or prejudice, based on or a perception of a person's disability; race; or religion; or sexual orientation or transgender identity or harassment for any other reason, such as harassment based on sex.

Coventry University have a specific policy that ensures you are able to report incidents of harassment or hate crime whether it’s something you have experienced or witnessed. This can be logged report or even be done anonymously.

By Suzanna


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