NATIONAL ET LOCAL commemorations


National and local commemorations are among the Foundation's key tools for transmitting knowledge of the history of slavery and achieving public recognition of Afro-descendants’ contributions to France.

The Month of Remembrance runs from April the 27th, the date of the definitive abolition of 1848, to June the 10th, the date of the commemoration in French Guiana. It will be the high point of the Foundation's annual calendar, along with the 20th of December on Reunion Island. An inclusive event intended for everyone, it will involve community groups, local authorities, schools, memory institutions, artists, athletes, the media and the general public.

Local authorities have been pioneers in this field, and many local authorities, departments and regions are organising ceremonies. Thanks to the framework of the Month of Remembrance, the Foundation aims to increase the number of communities organizing events fivefold in the the next three years, starting from a base currently estimated at 100 cities and towns. The Foundation will also support the organization of ceremonies around Abolition Days in overseas communities.


  • 10th of May: National Day of Remembrance of the Slave Trade, Slavery and their Abolition
  • 23rd of May: National Day of Tribute to Victims of Slavery


  • 27th of April in Mayotte
  • 22nd of May in Martinique
  • 27th of May in Guadeloupe
  • 28th of May in Sint Maarten
  • 10th of June in French Guiana
  • 9th of October in Saint-Barthélémy
  • 20th of December in Reunion Island


  • 23rd of August: UNESCO International Day for the Remembrance of the Slave Trade and its Abolition
  • 2nd of December: United Nations International Day for the Abolition of Slavery


This year 2020 was marked by the Covid 19 health crisis. In exceptional times like these the past enlightens us, not only because it reminds us of the tragedies of history, but also because it gives us examples of courage, resilience and flexibility.

The Foundation coordinated digital events throughout the Month of Remembrance so that everyone could participate and remember.

  • An awareness-raising campaign on social media with a film-manifesto by the Foundation
  • On-line events with leading figures talking about the history and memory of slavery
  • Public involvement through a participatory campaign on social media
  • Dozens of resources on slavery by national and local cultural and memory institutions were made available on-line throughout Memory Month.
  • On the 10th of May, a national ceremony in accordance with safety restrictions, and a live broadcast with debates and artistic performances were covered by major media.
  • On the 23rd of May, a national ceremony in accordance with safety restrictions and a digital prize ceremony for the Flame of Equality Competition.

See the 2020 National Commemorations


May the 10th, 2021 – 20 years of the Taubira Law

The year 2021 will mark the 20th anniversary of the Taubira Law, which recognizes the slave trade and slavery as crimes against Humanity. Christiane Taubira is President of the Foundation's Support Committee. This milestone will set a new tone for national ceremonies. May the 10th, 2021 should increase public awareness, with the audience for events expanding from activists and institutions to reach all French citizens.

The Foundation is preparing a cycle of events to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Law.

The 23rd of May 2021

For the National Day of Tribute to the Victims of Slavery on the 23rd of May, a ceremony is planned at the Tuileries Gardens, where the National Memorial to the victims of slavery announced by the President of France on the 27th of April 2018 is to be inaugurated.

Local ceremonies 

Currently in France, about a hundred cities and towns commemorate the abolition of slavery every year in May, June or December. Often organized at the instigation of local community groups that fought for remembrance of slavery, these ceremonies have become recurring moments in local life.

In 2021, the Foundation hopes to significantly increase the number of ceremonies and events throughout the county. Empowered by the 22 town councils among the founding members, the Foundation can also count on three key partners that have joined the Territories Board – the Association of Mayors of France, the Association of Departments of France, and the Association of Regions of France – to promote shared remembrance. This network set up by the Foundation will enable productive exchanges with local and regional authorities.

A space dedicated to local authorities will be opened on our website soon in order to facilitate exchanges between them, offer resources (kits) and share experiences.

To achieve its goals, the Foundation intends to:

  • Work to increase the number of ceremonies and initiatives in cities and towns across the county
  • Work closely with the appropriate ministries on the annual bulletin sent to prefects and deans concerning the organization of local ceremonies.
  • Encourage prefects to distribute the new bulletin to all municipalities and inform them of the support offered by the Foundation.
  • Encourage, accompany and support the implementation of local projects on the issue of slavery through calls for labelling projects and/or subsidies.
  • Publishing a map of local initiatives and events on the Foundation’s website.
  • Making a shared calendar of initiatives online.