TORONTO, March 19, 2018 /CNW/ - The 1960 killing of 69 people at a peaceful demonstration against apartheid in Sharpeville, South Africa led to the 1966 UN General Assembly proclamation of March 21 to be the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. On this day, the Canadian Race Relations Foundation calls upon all Canadians to understand the history and of racist incidents and practices in Canada, and to work together towards a society where mutual respect for our human dignity prevails and racism is seen as completely unacceptable.
"As a country, we have much to celebrate when it comes to promoting harmonious race relations, but we need to understand that a lot more work needs to be done to ensure that Canadian society is fair, just, and equitable for all, regardless of race, creed, colour or ethnic origin," said Albert Lo, CRRF Chairperson. "We all have a role to play in this national journey," continued Lo, "and it is our hope that all Canadians will join us in realizing this vision."
Research and education are crucial to understanding the nature of racism and racial discrimination in Canada. The CRRF published educational resource, Doing the Right Thing, asks students to think mindfully about the complex issues related to our past mistakes and how we can try to make up for them – as individuals, as communities, and as Canadians. This free downloadable resource is available on the CRRF website in both English and French.
The CRRF 2018 edition of the Canada Lecture to will advance further dialogue on these issues. On March 21st at the University of Toronto's Faculty of Law, the Honourable Mr. Justice Russell Juriansz of the Ontario Court of Appeal will deliver a lecture on Contemporary Issues in Freedom of Expression. To prepare for this event, the CRRF organized a national dialogue of university students from Vancouver, Toronto, and Halifax in February to address the issue of freedom of speech on campus.
"With recent reports of hate speech and graffiti being reported across the country, as well as the documented increase in hate crimes between 2016 and 2017, Justice Juriansz's lecture is very timely," said Dr. Lilian Ma, Executive Director of the CRRF. "We look forward to hearing him share his wisdom and unique insights on this topic."
To register for the 2018 Canada Lecture, please visit this website.
About the Canadian Race Relations Foundation
The Canadian Race Relations Foundation facilitates the development, sharing and application of knowledge and expertise to contribute to the elimination of racism and all forms of racial discrimination in Canadian society, to nurture an inclusive society based on equity, social harmony, mutual respect and human dignity, based on positive race relations and the shared values of human rights and democratic institutions.