March 21st, 2018
March 21st, 2018
Today I join with New Democrats across Canada to mark the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
This day is an important opportunity for each of us to begin doing the vital work of examining our own beliefs and potential biases. Once it is allowed to grow, hate doesn’t pick and choose. It spreads like a fire. That is why we all have the responsibility to stand up against hate and discrimination as individuals, and make sure that we don’t allow it in our homes, our workplaces or our communities.
But as important as they are, our individual efforts to stamp out racism and hate are not enough. To truly eliminate racial discrimination, we have to come together as a society to address the discrimination that has been built into our systems.
When we consider the essential services and systems we all depend on as Canadians – the economy, the education system, the justice system, immigration, child welfare, and so many others – Indigenous and racialized people are subject to disproportionately poor outcomes across the board.
That is why it is so necessary for us to specifically name and address systemic racism. It is why the government must make reconciliation more than just a fancy word, but an ongoing policy of pursuing a nation-to-nation relationship with Indigenous communities.
People deserve more from their government than declarations, symbolic gestures, and studies.
New Democrats will continue to propose real measures to end discriminatory practices in our systems and eliminate barriers to advancement, education and resources for racialized Canadians and Indigenous Peoples.