TORONTO, October 28, 2014 – The Canadian Race Relations Foundation (CRRF) commends the residents of Cold Lake, Alberta for demonstrating the best of Canadian values last week upon learning that a local mosque had been vandalized.
When it was discovered Friday morning that windows had been smashed and hateful graffiti had been spray painted on the mosque, numerous people from the wider Cold Lake community pitched in to clean up and, in the process, reaffirmed the Canadian values of empathy for neighbours, respect for human rights and freedoms, and taking responsibility through action.
"The people of Cold Lake have demonstrated that showing respect for their neighbours and being willing to defend them as integral members of the community is the best way to counter hatred and bigotry," said Albert Lo, Chairperson, CRRF. "By standing with their neighbours when it counted, they illustrated in the deepest and most direct way the principles of civility, mutual respect and community action to emphasize the rule of law, which underlie Canadian approaches to inclusivity and multiculturalism."
CRRF Executive Director Anita Bromberg added, "As heartened as we are by the actions of the good people in Cold Lake, we are also deeply concerned by reports regarding threats that were made last week against the Muslim community in BC and against individuals in Ottawa, as well as anti-Muslim statements directed at political candidates in Toronto. Collective punishment is a form of bigotry and it has no place in Canadian society. Blaming all Muslims for the abhorrent terrorist acts allegedly perpetrated last week by two recent converts is unreasonable and unacceptable."
The CRRF is working with its many partners to make respect for Canadian values an integral part of our shared national identity.
CRRF Executive Director: Anita Bromberg, , 416-508-9033