加拿大是民主法制，提倡多元文化，尊重人權的國家。於1982年被納入加拿大憲法的“加拿大權力與自由憲章”明確指出任何種族歧視都是違法行為。保護加拿大社區安全及公民權力，是加拿大政府責無旁貸的職責。 在此，我們促請加拿大政府採取緊急措施，嚴明法治。對於在疫情防範期間而出現的歧視仇恨犯罪行徑，要堅決依法給予打擊。同時在教育和宣傳方面，對於加拿大華裔群體對加拿大做出的貢獻，應該給予公正的評價和認可。新冠狀病毒如其它疫症一樣，純粹是病毒災害，與任何族裔無關。我們堅信加拿大政府能夠維護社會安定，帶領全民齊心抗疫，度過難關。 最後，我們向奮戰在抗疫前線的醫護人員和公共服務人員，表達由衷的敬意。並呼籲民眾齊心戰勝疫情，盼望加拿大社會生活與經濟發展早日恢復正常。 公開信直接送交加拿大聯邦政府總理辦公室，加拿大國會，加拿大各主要政黨黨領和各區的國會議員，並送交各省長辦公室和各市長辦公室。
Combating Discrimination and Hate Crimes: Fighting the Pandemic Together!
Coronavirus (COVID-19) is a global pandemic that has drastically impacted the world with devastation and has claimed many lives. As of May 21, 2020, a global total of 5.14 million people have been diagnosed with this virus and 330,000 have died. In Canada, 81,324 were diagnosed nationally with a death toll of 6,152. COVID-19 has created chaos in the economy and turmoil to people’s livelihood.
This is a time where Canadians should be united to fight this epidemic, and not to fight among ourselves. Since the pandemic, racism and hate crimes against Asians, and especially against the Chinese community, are on the rise across the country. Racist remarks, hateful and threatening messages, and physical attacks have been directed to Canadians of Asian descent. Some examples that has been widely broadcasted include a 92-year-old Chinese elderly man that was physically dragged out of a convenience store and thrown to the ground resulting in bodily injury. Another incident involved a young Asian lady who was assaulted in the face as she was waiting to cross the street. Sadly, the list goes on.
Adding fuel to the growing anti-Asian racism and targeted hate crimes, two articles published by Global News on April 30, 2020 maliciously condemned Chinese Canadian organizations for voluntarily sending Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to family and friends in China during the early stage of the COVID-19 outbreak in China, calling this a treasonous act of supporting a foreign power and the hoarding of supplies to the detriment of Canada. We should note that Canada was also shipping PPEs to China around the same time frame.
When Canada was impacted by the pandemic, Chinese Canadian organizations have generously supported the local communities by donating imported medical equipment from China. It is perplexing why these contributions were not included in the Global News articles.
The support provided to Wuhan by Canadian community groups and the Canadian government has helped contained the COVID-19 virus in China and slowed the spread of this virus. This has strategically bought valuable time for the rest of the world, including Canada, to get prepared.
Sowing the seeds of hatred and the spreading of prejudice must not be tolerated. Canada is a democracy that takes pride in multiculturalism and is an advocate for human rights. The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedom, which was incorporated into the Canadian Constitution in 1982, clearly states that any racial discrimination is illegal. Canadians need to uphold our values, protect the safety of our communities and the civil rights of our citizens, regardless of race, colour, ethnicity and origin.
We urge the authorities to take swift actions to crackdown on hate crimes and prosecute the offenders. There needs to be more public awareness to recognize and reject racism, to embrace diversity, and to celebrate the long history of the contribution of the Chinese and other ethnic communities in the building of Canada. Throughout history, disease outbreaks have ravaged humanity and have never been known to discriminate against any specific ethnicity. Canadians should focus their efforts to unite Canadians in the fight against COVID-19 and not be detracted to engage in racial and hateful behaviours.
Finally, we wish to express our sincere gratitude and respect to the medical staff and public service personnel who are at the forefront fighting the COVID-19 pandemic. We hope that, with everyone’s effort, the “curve” will be flattened very soon, and Canada’s social economic activities will return to normal in the near future.
Chinese Benevolent Association of Vancouver
May 27, 2020
Tel: (604) 681-1923 Fax: (604) 682-0073