Premier David Eby; Mable Elmore, Parliamentary Secretary for Anti-Racism Initiatives; and Rachna Singh, Minister of Education and Child Care, have released the following statement in honour of Black Excellence Day:
“Today, we celebrate the many contributions of Black people and communities throughout our province.
“The term ‘Black excellence’ was born out of the civil rights movement in the 1960s. All too often, the achievements of Black Canadians and the ongoing civil rights struggle still go unacknowledged in our history books and school curriculum. When we celebrate Black excellence in our schools, workplaces and communities, our whole society benefits. When the voices and experiences of Black Canadians are amplified, all British Columbians benefit from powerful mentors they can look up to.
“This is the second year our province has proclaimed Black Excellence Day and it’s part of our ongoing commitment to build a more inclusive, just and fair province. To meet our government’s goal of serving all British Columbians equitably, we must reform the systems and structures that have disproportionately disadvantaged Indigenous, Black and people of colour since colonization.
“We’re working to equip B.C.’s young people with the skills they need to be actively anti-racist in their schools and communities. The K-12 Anti-Racism Action Plan will improve outcomes for racialized students and create a culture of belonging for all students and staff. It will include resources for the K-12 sector to understand and promote anti-oppressive systemic practices, such as improved school supports and greater skills and resource-sharing.
“Black Excellence Day is an opportunity to learn more about Black role models in history and those who are actively making our province a better place today. We encourage everyone to join us in including and amplifying the voices and stories of racialized British Columbians in our daily lives. A more diverse and inclusive B.C. is a better B.C. for everyone.”