TORONTO, December 14, 2007 - The Canadian Race Relations Foundation (CRRF) congratulates the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC) for taking the allegations of racism in the attacks on Asian anglers seriously and initiating the investigation. While the results are not surprising, they are nevertheless very disturbing, said Ayman Al-Yassini, Executive Director of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation (CRRF). Al-Yassini was responding to the OHRC's preliminary report on its investigation which was released today.
"The frequency of these and other similarly motivated attacks appear to be on the rise. It certainly reflects the need for all of us to treat the matter of racism and hate more urgently," Al-Yassini added. "We fully support the proposed actions by the OHRC" to seek solutions and obtain concrete commitments for action". We want to expand that action to the federal government level as well because this is not just an Ontario problem; this is Canada-wide problem."
Recent attacks, particularly against persons of Asian descent, some of whom were visiting students, have been reported in several communities including New Brunswick and British Columbia.
Earlier this week, the CRRF released a survey which showed that one in four Canadians felt their rights have been violated and which identified race, colour or ethnicity as primary reasons.
"We cannot continue to treat these episodes as aberrations. There is an urgent need to take proactive action in dealing with racism, from the level of the school right up through the institutions of government and the public sector," concluded Al-Yassini.