Remembrance Day Grows in Importance

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Remembrance Day Services in Thunder Bay - 2013
Remembrance Day Services in Thunder Bay – 2013

THUNDER BAY – Is Remembrance Day important? Every year growing numbers of people are participating in Remembrance Day activities. In Thunder Bay there are three services you can attend. There is a parade and service at Waverly Park on the north side of the city, Fort William Gardens plays host to Remembrance Day, and up on Mount McKay on the Fort William First Nation there is a service.

This is the 100 year mark for the start of World War One, and it has been seventy-four years since the start of World War Two. The numbers of veterans who served in those two conflicts are slowly dwindling.

However three in ten (27%) Canadians say that they will attend an official Remembrance Day service on November 11th this year, an increase over the 23% who said they attended one last year, according to a new Ipsos Reid poll conducted on behalf of the Vimy Foundation.

After the horrific attack and murder of a Canadian Soldier at the National War Memorial in Ottawa, Remembrance Day 2014 is taking on a special significance.

There has been a great deal of attention placed on the sacrifice of Canadian soldiers recently, given the tragic killings of Corporal Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Officer Patrice Vincent on Canadian soil. Despite this, the 27% of Canadians who say they will attend a ceremony this year is down from the 30% who, in 2012, said they would attend.

There is presently a bill before Parliament that would make Remembrance Day a national statutory holiday. The poll shows that most (82%) Canadians would support November 11th being made holiday (down 3 points since a similar poll conducted in 2012), while just 18% would not (up 3 points).

While most Canadians won’t be attending an official service this year, eight in ten (77%) say that they will observe two minutes of silence at 11 o’clock on November 11th (down 3 points), and an equal proportion (77%, down 5 points) are wearing a poppy in the lead up to Remembrance Day.

Honouring Canada’s Fallen…

The data show that some Canadians are more likely than others to remember Canada’s fallen in various ways:

  • Those in Alberta (41%) and Atlantic Canada (39%) are most likely to say they will attend an official ceremony, followed by those living in British Columbia (31%), Ontario (31%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (20%) and Quebec (9%).
  • Atlantic Canadians (94%) and Ontarians (90%) are most likely to say they will observe two minutes of silence at 11 o’clock on November 11th, followed by those in British Columbia (76%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (74%), Alberta (71%) and Quebec (55%).
  • Atlantic Canadians (94%) and British Columbians (90%) are most likely to say they’re wearing a poppy in the lead up to November 11th, followed by those living in Ontario (87%), Alberta (83%), Saskatchewan and Manitoba (79%) and Quebec (43%).
  • Atlantic Canadians (94%) and residents of Saskatchewan and Manitoba (94%) are most likely to support Remembrance Day being made a national holiday, followed by a majority of those in British Columbia (88%), Ontario (84%), Alberta (81%) and Quebec (71%).

In Thunder Bay you can view the Remembrance Day Services live from Fort William Gardens on NetNewsLedger. Visit this link: Remembrance Day 2014

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