Thunder Bay Standing United Against Racism

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The City of Thunder Bay stood shoulder to shoulder against racism at a media conference in Thunder Bay
The City of Thunder Bay stood shoulder to shoulder against racism at a media conference in Thunder Bay

Large Gathering to Support Respect

THUNDER BAY – Thunder Bay City Hall was packed this afternoon for a media conference. The subject of the conference was community relations and racism in the city.

In a statement issued by the city, “The City of Thunder Bay is working steadily to be an inclusive, progressive community that respects all citizens. The City’s Anti-Racism Advisory Committee, historic Aboriginal Liaison Strategy, and the respect. Initiative are examples of how the City is working towards its vision to be a connected, healthy, vibrant and strong city with high quality of life for all”.

The City of Thunder Bay stood shoulder to shoulder against racism at a media conference in Thunder Bay
The City of Thunder Bay stood shoulder to shoulder against racism at a media conference in Thunder Bay

“Last evening’s election results make it very clear, that the views of one of our local Libertarian candidates do not reflect the values of this community,” said Mayor Keith Hobbs. “The City of Thunder Bay rejects her damaging statements, and has no tolerance for racism or hate-biased attitudes.”

“The full-page campaign ad that appeared earlier this week with the quite frankly appalling statements, is an example of the need for important work like the Aboriginal Liaison Strategy and the Walk a Mile Film Project,” said John Hannam, City Clerk and Manager of the Aboriginal Liaison Strategy Office. “It also brought to light the question of, ‘where is that line the publishers of the ad believe was not crossed?’”

Hannam said, “When we opened the Aboriginal Liaison Office in 2008 it was with the recognition that building relationships and trust with the Aboriginal community was our first priority, and that doing so would require an on-going effort. Moving forward together as a community requires education and understanding of one another, a foundation of the City’s Aboriginal Liaison Strategy. We believe that education and understanding is arrived at through initiatives like the Walk A Mile Film Project and the conversations that the films are meant to spark, not uninformed statements such as those so prominently proclaimed this week in the Chronicle Journal”.

“We call upon everyone in this community to join us in a conversation about growing understanding, moving forward as a community in a good way, and building strong, positive relationships with one another towards a better future for everyone in our city.”

It was standing room only at Thunder Bay City Hall this afternoon
It was standing room only at Thunder Bay City Hall this afternoon

“I would say we are working to make the world a better place,” said Amina Anita Abu-Bakare, Chair – Anti-Racism Advisory Committee. “One that is a peaceful world where we are trying to right the wrongs of the past one person at a time, so our children and grandchildren can live in a fair, equal and just Province of Ontario and the world.”

Fort William First Nation Chief Morriseau

NAN Grand Chief Harvey Yesno

Robertson Superior Chief Peter Collins

The City was joined by Northern Superior Regional Grand Chief Peter Collins, Grand Chief Nishnawbe Aski Nation Harvey Yesno, Deputy Grand Chief Nishnawbe Aski Nation Alvin Fiddler and Fort William First Nation Chief Georjann Morriseau.