New anti-racism data act will help fight systemic racism (

Media Contacts

Lindsay Byers

Press Secretary
Office of the Premier

Ministry of Attorney General

Media Relations
778 587-3237


What people are saying about the anti-racism data act

Lisa Beare, Minister of Citizens’ Services –

“You can’t change what you can’t see, and if we want to build services that work for people in B.C., we need data that reflects the diverse population of our province. This legislation will not only enable the safe and secure collection of demographic data but also ensure that government takes action to address systemic racism and inequalities in government programs.”

Dr. Birinder Narang, family physician; steering committee member, South Asian COVID-19 Task Force; clinical assistant professor with the Department of Family Practice, University of British Columbia; chair, board of directors, Burnaby Divisions of Family Practice –

“As a family physician and a member of a racialized community, it pained me to see the lack of infrastructure needed to adequately collect race-based data in a way that did not perpetuate stigma. Through the pandemic, we saw disproportionate impacts on racialized communities but felt powerless to advocate for our patients. The anti-racism data legislation will help to remove barriers, reduce systemic racism and increase equitable access to health-care services going forward for all in an evidence-informed manner.”

Kasari Govender, B.C.'s Human Rights Commissioner –

“The new legislation is an important marker of our growth toward a more equal society. This legislation is the culmination of decades of work by Indigenous Peoples, racialized communities, activists, community organizers and scholars. My office is proud to have contributed to this work through our Grandmother Perspective report. We are grateful to our community partners for making that work possible, and we are glad to see the introduction of this important legislation today.”

June Francis, co-director, The Co-Laboratorio Project; director, Institute for Diaspora Research and Engagement; associate professor, Beedie School of Business SFU; chair, Hogan's Alley Society –

“This data legislation represents a historic moment of possibilities for transformative change for all British Columbians. This courageous act is built on the advocacy and insights of Indigenous, Black and people of colour who shared their knowledge with the goal of redressing long-standing racial inequities and inequalities. It is an important beginning in addressing institutional and structural barriers and biases in policies, programs and services.”

Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond (Aki-Kwe), professor of law, Peter Allard School of Law, University of British Columbia –

“With this new initiative, data standards will be established to support evidence-based decision making and public accountability to help surface and eliminate systemic racism and promote substantive equality and racial equity. This legislation will support changes called for over many years and is a positive and welcome step forward.”  

Anti-racism actions in British Columbia
  • From Sept. 9, 2021, to Jan. 31, 2022, communities were invited to share their thoughts on how comfortable they are sharing data with government, how they prefer to identify and their experiences using government services.
  • More than 13,000 people took part in more than 400 community-led online and in-person sessions, an online public survey and dedicated engagement with First Nations and Métis communities.
  • The findings of these sessions were captured in five reports that were released on April 19, 2022.
  • Other government actions that are making B.C. a safer and more inclusive place for everyone include:
    • providing funding to support several anti-racism initiatives such as the Resilience BC Anti-Racism Network and a provincewide anti-racism awareness campaign;
    • reinstating the B.C. Human Rights Commissioner;
    • reviewing the Police Act, developing an anti-racism action plan for kindergarten to Grade 12 and tackling anti-Indigenous racism in health care;
    • working to introduce a new anti-racism act; and
    • developing a multilingual racist-incident hotline for British Columbians to report racist incidents and receive support and referrals.