TORONTO, November 19, 2015 / CNW / – Starting today, the National Film Board of Canada (NFB) interactive iPad app and website The Faith Project offers a unique and intimate look at how seven young Canadians from different backgrounds weave faith into their…
TORONTO, November 16, 2015 / CNW / – Rubin Friedman, spokesperson for the Canadian Race Relations Foundation stated, "Immediately following the horrible events that terrorized the residents of Paris, Canadians came together in solidarity with victims of terrorism there, in Beirut and elsewhere."
TORONTO, Oct. 27, 2015 / CNW / - The Canadian Race Relations Foundation (CRRF) will celebrate the 19th anniversary of the proclamation of its governing legislation, the Canadian Race Relations Foundation Act, with an Open House and Citizenship reaffirmation ceremony
TORONTO, Oct. 16, 2015 / CNW / - Citizenship Week is a time to reflect on and celebrate the rights and responsibilities all Canadian citizens share and thereby deepen our appreciation of our collective sense of belonging.
Once there was nearly nothing to remind us of Canada’s first national internment operations. A little band of activists and volunteers changed that. There is still not enough, not yet. But that will change.
November 26, 2015: Full-day professional development workshop focuses on faith and belonging. Read More
Cross-Canada Workshop: Ottawa
February 17, 2016: Full-day professional development workshop focuses on faith and belonging.
Through collaboration with communities, organizations and people across Canada, the CRRF works to promote a deeper sense of Canadian identity for all Canadians by strengthening our understanding and acceptance of Canadian values, promoting Canadian identity and recognizing the responsibilities of good citizenship.
November 2015 - Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau has indicated that Canada will be taking in 25000 refugees by the end of the year. Canadians have clearly expressed their wish that our country play its part in this global crisis.
Front line agencies are warning a cautionary note that we might not, however, be quite ready for such an influx. Of course their focus is on providing housing, training, basic needs and so on. I raise another challenge for all of us. A challenge central to the mission of the CRRF, which has just marked its 19th anniversary last month -- namely of countering racism and building social cohesion. So I ask, are we ready to welcome in these refugees to be included within Canadian society with respect and kindness?
Surveys indicate that our hearts are certainly in the right places. In the CRRF's 2014 Report on Canadian Values, when asked to identify their most important value from a list of 10, respect for human rights and freedoms scored highest at 21 per cent. When asked specifically about multiculturalism, 60 per cent agreed that it requires reasonable accommodation of cultural practices, including practices about which the respondents might feel uncomfortable.
The question remains: do our actions match our hearts? In the Report, responses to questions concerning multiculturalism reveal a troubling schism between theoretical acceptance and practical application. 64% of respondents felt that Canadian multiculturalism allows people to pursue certain cultural practices that are incompatible with Canadian laws and norms. One third of respondents indicated that religion created barriers to full participation. In a May 2014 Capturing the Pulse survey, two-third of respondents were worried about the possible rise of racism.
Whether we acknowledge it or not, the fact is that racism and xenophobia lurks among us. Look at the headlines from just this last week or so. A complaint was raised about an inappropriate exercise in a text book stereotyping members of the Black community. During the election, there were numerous reports of campaign signs of visual minority candidates being defaced with racist, xenophobic statements. In one case, a student leader, who is Muslim and Black, was told 'Go home. You're not a real Canadian" . Equally troubling are the reports of intolerance on campuses, whether antisemitic and threatening aimed at those seen as "others" , or directed towards international students who are excluded and being told to go home.
So yes, open the doors, but the challenge also includes opening our minds and hearts on the road to inclusion and harmony.
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