Today, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau issued the following statement on Emancipation Day:
“On the same date of 1834, a Slavery Abolition Law The British Parliament (Abolition of Slavery Act) of 1833 came into effect and paved the way for the emancipation of slaves of African descent throughout much of the British Empire. Since then, many people of African descent and their allies have celebrated August 1 as Emancipation Day, a milestone in the pursuit of freedom, justice and equality.
“Slavery existed in what is now Canada from the sixteenth century until its abolition in 1834. The struggle of blacks for freedom and liberation in Canada was far from over. After slavery was abolished, people of African descent in Canada still faced exclusion from some public spaces. , such as restaurants and theaters, as well as segregation in housing, education, and employment through the use of specific laws and practices.
“Despite the abolition of slavery nearly two centuries ago, the legacy of anti-black racism is still present today, rooted in our institutions, policies and practices. The history of slavery, apartheid, and the marginalization of people of African descent in Canada is an often forgotten part of the country’s history, Which has normalized the institutional forms and systems of racism or made them invisible.
« Aujourd’hui, les Canadiens noirs continuent d’être victimes de préjugés, de discrimination et de disparités de longue date dans l’accès à l’éducation, au logement et à l’emploi, ce qui leur participation limit à plee à plee the society. The current COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the social, health and economic disparities affecting the lives of Black Canadians and many others in Canada.
“Earlier this year, the House of Commons and the Senate voted unanimously to celebrate Emancipation Day on August 1. Today, we recognize and honor people of African descent for their courage, determination and resilience in the face of the devastating effects of the transatlantic slave trade on their individual liberties, families and cultures. For Black Canadians, this day marks the culmination of decades of activism within the Black and Allied communities.It also illustrates the themes of the International Decade for People of African Descent: Recognition, Justice and Development.
“While great progress has been made thanks to the commitment and dedication of black Canadians, much remains to be done to ensure a just future for all Canadians. Thanks to the Canadian strategy to combat racism powered by Federal Secretariat to Combat RacismWe will continue to fight anti-black racism in Canada and address important issues, such as economic inclusion, advancing justice reforms, modernizing policing standards and practices, and improving support for local communities.
“Emancipation Day is also an opportunity to celebrate the achievements of Black Canadians and participate in community and cultural activities to learn more about the sacrifices they made for their liberation and freedom in Canada. Whether through culture, science, sports or business, Black Canadians make important contributions to many areas of Canadian society. .
“Emancipation Day is a representation of social activism, justice and our commitment to a just future. Today we renew our commitment to combating black racism, xenophobia, racial discrimination and intolerance faced by people of African descent in Canada. On behalf of the Government of Canada, I encourage everyone to reflect on the contributions of black Canadians, and to learn more about the history of Liberation Day, Stand Up Against Racism. Together, we will continue to build a better Canada for all.”
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