'This is not stopping today,': Maritimers protest racism on Canada Day
HALIFAX -- Anti-racism walks were held across the region and country on Canada Day.
"It took the death of George Floyd to mobilize us," said Halifax demonstrator Solitah Shortt. "It's the youth that has us out here. They started the mobilizations, and we're just providing that support to lift them up."
"This is a new beginning to a revolution that we are going to stand and keep fighting," said Halifax demonstrator Sherry Anne Crowe. "This is not stopping today, this Canada Day, next Canada Day or any other Canada Day, until equality for everybody is out there."
Xenophobia and racism toward Chinese and other Asian communities in Canada has grown in 2020, causing people to fear for their safety.
"I try to avoid places where there may be less people who look like me and go to places where there are more people who look like me – Chinese or other East Asians – so that I will feel safety in a crowd," said Amy Go, president of the Chinese Canadian National Council for Social Justice.
Advocates say one key to better understanding Canada's diversity is a more fulsome education curriculum.
"Social studies classes are too soft in talking about genocide, talking about stealing of lands and resources," said Wolastoq Grand Council Chief Ron Tremblay, who attended Fredericton's anti-racism walk.
Other advocates say kindness will be the critical component to ridding the country of racism.
"There is a huge divide that must be closed, and we can only close that divide – whether you're talking about racism, discrimination, or hatred – we have to close and get rid of that," said National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Perry Bellegarde. "We can only do that by working together and having love and kindness and respect for each other as human beings."