Search for "racism"

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Ethnocentrism

Ethnocentrism is a conscious or unconscious bias which distorts our understanding of reality because of an overemphasis on group perspective as a reference point. This bias often leads to a misinterpretation of realities which differ from those of the group to which we belong. Ethnocentric thought can also lead to a more negative opinion of foreign groups and to a superior view of our own.

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Islamophobia in Canada

Islamophobia and anti-Muslim hate can be defined as systematic hostility toward people who are or appear to be Muslim, or toward the religion of Islam. In Canada, this hostility has been manifested in a growing number of acts of discrimination and attacks against people associated with the Muslim community. Although the generalized use of the term Islamophobia to refer to this phenomenon is recent, Islamophobia as a lived reality is not. After Christianity, Islam is the religion with the second largest number of adherents in Canada. In 2011, 3.2 per cent of the people in Canada identified themselves as Muslim.

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Anti-Racism Education in Canada

Anti-racism education is an action-oriented educational strategy that emerged in Canada in the 1960s thanks to Black community members’ activism. The goal was to address racism and other related systems of social oppression in institutions like schools. Anti-racism educators in Canada address White supremacy and colonialism as factors behind today’s systemic racism. Over the years, anti-racism has evolved in Canadian schools to address educational racism and to discuss issues of equity, power, access, White privilege and systemic inequalities. Anti-racism initiatives continue to evolve in Canadian schools. They support students’ understanding of how to address racism while helping to create equity and societal change.

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Racism

Racism is a belief that humans can be divided into a hierarchy of power on the basis of their differences in race and ethnicity. With some groups seen as superior to others on the sole basis of their racial or ethnic characteristics. Racism is frequently expressed through prejudice and discrimination. The belief can manifest itself through individuals, but also through societies and institutions.

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Anti-Semitism in Canada

Anti-Semitism is an attitude characterized by hostility and discriminatory behaviour towards Jewish people. Anti-Semitism has a long history in Canada in fueling discrimination and unfair treatment against Jewish Canadians. Anti-Semitism in Canada was never restricted to the extremists of society. Rather, it has always been part of the mainstream, shared to varying degrees by all elements of the nation. Until the 1950s it had respectability; no one apologized for being anti-Jewish — no one asked them to. Expressions of anti-Semitism were heard in the halls of Parliament, read in the press, taught in the schools and absorbed in most churches.

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Anti-Black Racism in Canada

Black people have been in Canada since the early 17th century (see Black Canadians). Throughout their 400-year history in Canada, Black people have faced racism, discrimination and hostility based on the colour of their skin. Anti-Black racism refers to attitudes, beliefs, stereotyping, discrimination and prejudice targeted at people of African descent. The roots of anti-Black racism are found in enslavement and its legacies. Deeply entrenched in Canadian institutions, policies and practices, anti-Black racism is either normalized or rendered invisible to the larger white society. Anti-Black racism manifests itself in how Black Canadians are disadvantaged, or marginalized, in society, the economy and politics. As a result, Black Canadians often have unequal opportunities, higher unemployment and significant poverty rates. They are also overrepresented in the criminal justice system (see also Criminal Code of Canada).

Anti-Black racism has manifested itself through various historical examples, including enslavement (the transatlantic slave trade) and segregation. Ongoing issues of anti-Black racism, such as police brutality and racial microaggressions, continue to persist in Canada.

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Haitian Taxi Drivers' Struggle Against Racism in the 1970s and 1980s in Montreal

Haitian taxi drivers in Montreal fought a long battle to gain acceptance in the city’s taxi industry in the 1970s and 1980s. They denounced the racism that prevailed in this industry and demanded their right to work as taxi drivers. Ultimately, their struggle succeeded: some taxi companies were forced to pay fines, and in the course of the 1980s, these drivers began to have an easier time working in the industry. (See Anti-Black Racism in Canada.)

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Racial Segregation of Black Students in Canadian Schools

Historically, many schools kept Black Canadians separate from white Canadians. Racial segregation policies excluded and limited Black Canadians’ rights. Some universities denied admission to Black people on the basis of their race. (See Anti-Black Racism in Canada.) This was particularly the case for medical and nursing programs.

See Racial Segregation of Black People in Canada.

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Immigration to Canada

The movement of individuals of one country into another for the purpose of resettlement is central to Canadian history. The story of Canadian immigration is not one of orderly population growth; instead, it has been — and remains one — about economic development as well as Canadian attitudes and values. It has often been unashamedly economically self-serving and ethnically or racially discriminatory despite contributing to creating a multicultural society (see Immigration Policy in CanadaRefugees to Canada). Immigration has also contributed to dispossessing Indigenous peoples of their ancestral lands.

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Environmental Racism in Canada

Environmental racism is the disproportionate proximity and greater exposure of Indigenous, Black and other racialized communities to polluting industries and environmentally hazardous activities. In Canada, Indigenous and African Nova Scotian communities have been the most impacted by environmental racism. Examples of environmental racism in Nova Scotia include an open dump in Africville, landfills in Shelburne and Lincolnville, a pulp and paper mill in Pictou Landing First Nation, and a pipeline in Sipekne’katik First Nation. A pipeline also runs through Wet'suwet'en First Nation in British Columbia, while in Ontario there is mercury contamination in Grassy Narrows First Nation and over 60 petrochemical facilities surrounding Aamjiwnaang First Nation.

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Pictures and Video Surface of Justin Trudeau in Blackface

In the midst of a federal election campaign, Time magazine published a photo from the 2001 yearbook of Vancouver’s West Point Grey Academy showing a then-29-year-old Justin Trudeau with dark makeup on his face, neck and hands as part of an “Arabian Nights” costume. Trudeau told assembled media that “It’s something that I didn’t realize was racist at the time, but now I recognize it was something racist to do and I regret.” He also confessed to wearing blackface makeup when he sang Harry Belafonte’s “Banana Boat Song (Day-O)” in a talent show as a high school student. A video surfaced of a third, undated instance of Trudeau in blackface. He admitted that he could not rule out the possibility of other instances.

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Thunder Bay Police Department Accused of Systemic Racism

A two-year investigation conducted by the Office of the Independent Review Director (OIPRD) concluded that “systemic racism and neglect” is rampant in the Thunder Bay Police Services and tainted their investigations into the deaths of nine Indigenous men. The report also recommended psychological testing for prospective officers to weed out those with racist attitudes. The day the report was issued, Maclean’s named Thunder Bay Canada’s “top city for hate crimes” and published an article titled “Something must be done about the Thunder Bay police.”

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Don Cherry Fired from Hockey Night in Canada

After the 9 November broadcast of Hockey Night in Canada, during which Don Cherry made racist statements criticizing immigrants for not properly commemorating Remembrance Day, Rogers Sportsnet announced that Cherry “would immediately step down from his role with Hockey Night in Canada.” Cherry claimed that he was fired and said he wished he had expressed himself with different words. The opinions of Canadians were divided on the matter. Loyal fans of Cherry’s remained supportive and were critical of Rogers Sportsnet’s decision. Many others believed Cherry’s firing was long overdue.

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Refugees to Canada

Refugees are migrants who fled their countries of origin to escape persecution or danger and have found asylum in another country. Over time, Canada has been the landing ground for many migrants seeking refuge from all over the world. However, discriminatory immigration policies have also prevented some asylum seekers in need of protection from entering Canada (see Canadian Refugee Policy).

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Bromley Armstrong

Bromley Lloyd Armstrong, CM, OOnt, Black trade unionist, community organizer and activist (born 9 February 1926 in Kingston, Jamaica; died 17 August 2018 in Toronto, ON). Bromley Armstrong was a pivotal figure in the early anti-discrimination campaigns in Ontario that led to Canada’s first anti-discrimination laws. A self-described “blood and guts” ally of the working poor, Armstrong demonstrated a lifelong commitment to the trade union movement and the battle against disadvantage and discrimination. For more than six decades, Armstrong worked for human rights, helping to generate civic and government support for racial equality and advocating for human rights reforms in public policy.

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Ruth Lor Malloy

Ruth Lor Malloy (née Lor), journalist, writer, activist (born 4 August 1932, in Brockville, ON). Malloy was a key figure in fighting against discrimination in Ontario in the 1950s (see Prejudice and Discrimination in Canada). She participated in the high profile Dresden restaurant sit-in of 1954. In 1973, she published the first English-language guidebook to China in North America. Throughout her decades-long career, Malloy worked tirelessly to foster intercultural dialogue and justice for marginalized groups.