Anne Kang, Minister Responsible for Multiculturalism, has issued the following statement in honour of BC Multiculturalism Week, Nov. 15-21, 2020:
“As we recognize BC Multiculturalism Week, I am reminded of how incredibly privileged we are to live in the most culturally diverse province in Canada. The history, traditions, perspectives and ways of life of more than 200 First Nations communities and people who trace their origins to more than 200 countries or regions significantly enrich and strengthen our society.
“I am also reminded of the many dedicated British Columbians who work tirelessly to make our province a kinder, more inclusive and welcoming place. This work is so important, especially during these challenging times.
“Since the onset of the pandemic, there has been a substantial increase in hate activity and incidents, highlighting the persistence of racism in British Columbia. At the same time, our government has stepped up with bold actions in our continued efforts to fight racism.
“As minister responsible for multiculturalism, I will always uphold and fight for the values of equity, acceptance and inclusion to build a better life and greater opportunities for the people of British Columbia. I am proud of what our government has accomplished to protect and honour diversity in B.C., and I am excited about the new work underway as outlined in the Stronger BC Plan.
“We have a right to feel safe and included in our communities, but it is going to take significant effort and the involvement of everyone. Each one of us shares the responsibility to protect diversity in this province and to help create an environment where everyone is welcomed and accepted for exactly who they are.
“During BC Multiculturalism Week, I encourage us all to reflect upon how to contribute to greater understanding, respect and appreciation for our multicultural society. I know that together, we can expose and challenge the systemic roots of hate and intolerance to provide a better future for us and our children.”