For many tourists visiting Peru, the hotel doorman is likely to be their first encounter with an African-Peruvian. It is a job usually filled by young black men in Peru. They also often occupy roles as chauffeurs or coffin bearers.
For activist Jorge Ramírez, this is another example of the structural racism in Peruvian society, which means black people have extremely limited job prospects. “The prejudice is that that’s all we’re good for,” said Ramírez, president of the Black Association for the Defence and Promotion of Human Rights (Asonedh).
Now, it is hoped, change is at hand. For the first time, a government body will be set up dedicated solely to policies that favour Peru’s African-descended population.