OTTAWA – Black History Month is Canada’s opportunity to recognise the outstanding contributions of Black Canadians in every field of human endeavour. In this month, we come together to celebrate the achievements, cultures, traditions, innovation, and leadership of the Black Diaspora in Canada, via many forms of expression, including music, theatre, spoken word and dance.
“The achievements of the Black Diaspora in Canada are made all the more remarkable given the ongoing systemic barriers the Black community faces,” said Annamie Paul, Leader of the Green Party of Canada. “However, we have never allowed our oppression to define us nor to prevent us from excelling. I was proud to become the first Black person to be elected to lead a major federal party, and I am certain that I will not be the last,” said Ms. Paul.
During Black History Month, Canada recognises how far the Black community has come, but we should not forget the continued existence of systemic anti-Black racism in education, housing, employment, health, criminal justice, politics and in disproportionate environmental impacts. We have seen how the COVID-19 pandemic has also disproportionately impacted the Black community. The Green Party continues to call on the Government of Canada to implement the recommendations of the Report of the United Nations Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent on its mission to Canada, particularly as they relate to dismantling systemic racism.
Black history is Canadian history. Now, more than ever, educating people in Canada about the history of Black Canadians is essential. Shared histories, just like personal memories, can only exist when we solidify them through re-telling. By celebrating Black history, we acknowledge and preserve the experiences of Black people in Canada, and, to that end, the Green Party will continue to voice its support for the calls to the Government of Canada to proclaim August 1 as Emancipation Day, and to celebrate it in each year.
The theme of this Black History Month is “The Future is Now”, and the future is bright. Join us this month in celebration of the power and accomplishments of the Black community in Canada, and we invite you to add your voice in support of the ongoing and powerful calls for racial justice.
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