Five deserving British Columbians are being honoured for their work to end acts of racism and promote cultural inclusion at the Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Awards.
“Diverse and inclusive communities are strong communities,” said Premier John Horgan. “Congratulations to these remarkable individuals and organizations, who are working to end racism and discrimination, and make sure every person feels welcome to participate in B.C.’s economy, culture and society. Their actions are helping build a better B.C. for us all.”
The B.C. Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Awards celebrate British Columbians for excellence in promoting multiculturalism and addressing racism. Each year, members of the public nominate individuals, organizations and businesses whose outstanding work has strengthened inclusion and cultural diversity in their communities.
“It’s unacceptable that in a province as diverse as B.C., people live with the fear of facing racism or prejudice," said Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture. "To the recipients, I applaud each of you for your leadership in fostering inclusiveness, understanding and mutual respect. The work you are doing to fight hatred and promote multiculturalism is making life better for everyone in B.C.”
The ceremony took place on the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination and featured special performances in recognition of Nowruz, the Persian New Year, and Holi and Hola Mohalla, the Hindu and Sikh celebrations of spring.
“We’re at a critical moment in history where acts of racism and hatred are increasing, across the world and here at home in B.C.,” said Ravi Kahlon, Parliamentary Secretary for Multiculturalism and Sport. “We must stand together against those who seek to divide us and recognize that we each have the power to create a more inclusive society for everyone. The exemplary people recognized by these awards are creating the change that we need for a more just and inclusive society.”
- British Columbia has the largest proportion of ethno-cultural diversity in Canada:
- B.C. is home to 204 First Nations and vibrant urban Indigenous and Métis communities.
- 36% of British Columbians identified as a visible minority or Indigenous in the 2016 census (51% in Metro Vancouver).
- 2017 saw a sharp increase in hate crimes reported nationally — up 47% to 2,073 reported incidents.
- On Nov. 1, 2018, government introduced legislative amendments to the Human Rights Code that will re-establish a human rights commission for B.C. to promote and protect human rights for all British Columbians.
Learn about what the Province is doing to promote multiculturalism and address racism in B.C.:
A list of multiculturalism grant recipients can be found here:
A backgrounder follows.
- For a Punjabi translation, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/2019_Punjabi_NR_Multiculturalism_and_anti-racism_champions_honoured.pdf
- For a simplified Chinese translation, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/2019_NR_Multiculturalism_and_anti-racism_champions_honoured-Chinese_translation-simplified.pdf
- For a traditional Chinese translation, visit: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/2019_NR_Multiculturalism_and_anti-racism_champions_honoured-Chinese_translation-traditional.pdf