We must all take action to combat Islamophobia

January 30, 2023 – Ottawa, Ontario – Canadian Human Rights Commission

On the occasion of National Day of Remembrance of the Québec City Mosque Attack and Action against Islamophobia, Charlotte Anne Malischewski, Interim Chief Commissioner of the Canadian Human Rights Commission, issues the following statement:

In honour of yesterday’s National Day of Remembrance, the Canadian Human Rights Commission stands in solidarity with all Muslims in Canada as we remember the 2017 violent tragedy at the Québec City Mosque where six people were murdered and many others wounded. As we forever carry the weight of that terrible day in our hearts, we also insist upon turning our collective grief into collective action.

The fight against Islamophobia and all forms of anti-Muslim hate is all of ours. This is an issue that impacts the fabric of our country. No one should feel threatened because of who they are or what they believe. Not in Canada, not anywhere. We all have a role to play.

The Commission has been clear with Parliament: Islamophobia is racism. Anti-Muslim racism and Islamophobia permeate all aspects of society, including our workplaces. We all must do more to ensure that Muslim people in Canada feel welcome, included and valued in Canadian workplaces and Canadian society.

There is now a greater societal awareness of the hate, the threats and the violence that Muslim people are experiencing, but these experiences are not new. The time for action is now.

We were encouraged to hear last week of the appointment of Canada’s first Special Representative on Combatting Islamophobia. We welcome this as a vital step in the fight against Islamophobia.

The Canadian Human Rights Commission remains committed to being an ally in the fight against all forms of racism, including all forms of anti-Muslim hate in Canada.

Canada can and must do better.

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