February 06, 2017 – Organizations join forces to prioritize Anti-Black Racism on the Canadian political agenda.



Organizations join forces to prioritize Anti-Black Racism on the Canadian political agenda.

Ottawa, Ontario – (February 6, 2017) Today, several leaders from the black community across Canada joined forces to open dialogue with Parliamentarians about anti-black racism in Canada.

Representatives from over 25 organizations joined to support this effort, and align priorities to put anti-black racism on the political agenda in Canada. The list of organizations is expected to grow.

Representatives are meeting simultaneously with over 50 Members of Parliament (MP) from all three major parties representing 7 provinces.

The key ask is for MPs to support the tabling of legislation (currently being drafted by Greg Fergus, MP for Hull-Aylmer) that acknowledges the United Nations’ (UN) declaration of the International Decade for People of African Descent (International Decade), to raise awareness, and to begin to more actively address the unique challenges faced by African Canadians, which cannot be adequately addressed by general diversity and inclusion policies.

Among the topics being discussed are: Policing, Border Security, Corrections, Economic

Development, Education, Health Equity, Immigration, and diversity in Public Appointments.

The delegation consists of community leaders from Edmonton, Halifax, Montreal, Ottawa, and Toronto from a wide range of professional, religious, and socio-economic backgrounds. A broader representation from the community is expected as the message unfolds.

Consultant Tiffany Gooch, from Canada’s leading communications and public affairs firm

ENsight, provided pro bono service to coordinate the group.


“Anti-Black Racism does not stop at the American border.  Today we are asking political leaders to carry out the necessary policy work to meaningfully address anti-Black racism within our Canadian institutions and communities.”

Shawn Richard, Canadian Association of Black Lawyers

“As we join together to celebrate Black History this month, we must work together, with one voice, to ensure that combating anti-Black racism becomes and remains a political priority in Canada.”

June Girvan, Black History Ottawa

“Black communities in Canada include Muslims, who must face both anti-Black racism and Islamophobia while they navigate education, work, and social life.  We would like to see the issue of hate crimes targeting our community and other communities more publicly discussed by all levels of government and policies implemented to address hate crimes by further researching and contextualize reported hate crimes, understanding the backgrounds of hate crime perpetrators, and examining the needs of impacted communities in order to ensure the safety of all people living in Canada.”

Chelby Daigle, Muslim Link

“I am looking forward to working side by side with Canadians in the drafting of this very important Bill.  As activities are carried out worldwide for the International Decade for People of African Descent, I believe Canada has an opportunity to be a leader in word and in deed.”

Greg Fergus, MP Hull-Aylmer


  1. The degree to which African Canadians experience racism and incidences of racial discrimination has not been adequately measured or studied on a national level.  The adverse effects of racism and racial discrimination on African Canadians cannot be eliminated until they are defined, regularly tracked and publicly report
  2. Official recognition of the UN International Decade for People of African Descent is a catalyst to publicly note the contributions that African Canadians have made to enhance the fabric of Canadian society for developing measures to increase inclusion and reduce the effects of racism and racial discrimination in Canada.
  3. African Canadians are underrepresented in senior political, economic, educational and institutional positions of leadership. Unlike many other racialized and cultural groups, African Canadians have not seen proportional advances in representation in public institutions, socio-economic development or community institutions.


  1. La mesure dans laquelle les Afro-Canadiens sont l’objet de racisme et d’incidents de discrimination raciale n’a pas été convenablement évaluée ou étudiée à l’échelle nationale. Les répercussions défavorables sur les Afro-Canadiens du racisme et de la discrimination raciale ne peuvent être écartées tant qu’elles n’ont pas été cernées, suivies avec régularité et rapportées publiquement.
  2. La reconnaissance officielle de la Décennie internationale des personnes d’ascendance africaine des Nations Unies est un catalyseur en vue de constater publiquement les apports que les Afro-Canadiens ont fait au renforcement du tissu de la société canadienne et pour l’élaboration de mesures en vue d’augmenter l’inclusion et de réduire les incidences du racisme et de la discrimination raciale au C
  3. Les Afro-Canadiens sont sous-représentés dans les postes principaux de leadership politique, économique, pédagogique et institutionnel. Contrairement à d’autres groupes racialisés et culturels, les Afro-Canadiens n’ont pas vécu une évolution proportionnelle de leur représentation au sein des établissements publics et des institutions de développement socioéconomique ou communautaires.


This Initiative is supported by:

  • Africa Centre, Edmonton
  • Black Business and Professional Association
  • Black Educators Association
  • Black Health Alliance
  • Black History Ottawa
  • Black In Canada
  • BlackAgendaNoir
  • ByBlacks.com
  • Canadian Association of Black Lawyers
  • Canadian Black Caucus
  • Canadian Council for People of African Descent
  • First Fridays
  • Inspiring and Empowering Youth
  • J’Nikira Dinqinesh Education Centre – Every Child is Sacred
  • Jamaican Canadian Association
  • Justice for Abdirahman Coalition
  • Network of Black Business & Professional Women
  • Nova Scotia Alliance of Black School Educators
  • Muslim Link
  • Ontario Alliance of Black School Educators
  • Ontario Black History Society
  • The Legacy Voices Project
  • Trust 15
  • Young Haitian Chamber of Commerce
  • Young Leaders Advisory Council
  • 3R, working with Racialized Youth & the Canadian Judicial System




Tiffany Gooch
ENsight Canada

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