Official Opposition Foreign Affairs critic Paul Dewar (Ottawa Centre) made the following statement on the 100th anniversary of the War Measures Act internment of Canadians from Ukraine and Eastern Europe:
“In August of 1914 over 8,000 Canadians from Ukraine and Eastern Europe were rounded up and sent to camps across the country, in a breach of their civil liberties which had a devastating impact on the detainees, their families and friends.
In 2005 Bill C-331, the Internment of Persons of Ukrainian Origin Recognition Act passed in the Canadian Parliament, recognizing this injustice and helping to further pave the way forward.
Ukrainian-Canadians have come a long way since the internment camps and continue to make vital contributions to many aspects of Canadian life, including politics, the economy and culture.
On this solemn anniversary, we pay tribute to those who suffered during this time and pledge to do our part to prevent this injustice from being visited on others.”