1. The trans Atlantic Slave Trade, the associated system of racialized chattel slavery, and the phenomenon of institutionalized anti-Black racism that they gave rise to, have had a lasting detrimental effect upon all aspects of the lives of Afrikan/Black People in Canada for over 400 years ;
2. These racist structures and institutional practices have resulted in the inability of Afrikan/Black Canadians to rightfully access and enjoy many of the benefits of Canadian Society, particularly in such areas as education, housing, health, business, the justice system, and community development;
3. Afrikan/Black Canadians are a distinct people who have contributed significantly to the history, development, cultural mosaic and diversity of Canada;
4. Black/Afrikan Canadian Lives Matter;
5. The Province of Nova Scotia is the birthplace of Black History in Canada, dating back to 1605 and the origin of Afrikan enslavement in our country;
5. The United Nations (UN) has declared 2015-2024 the Decade for People of Afrikan Descent and has called upon nations to acknowledge and apologize for the suffering and evils of the enslavement of Afrikan People and to put reparative and remedial measures and programs in place;
6. The Government of Canada has thus far failed to respond to the UN Declaration, and has therefore failed to acknowledge and apologize for Canada’s role in the enslavement of Afrikan/Black People and their descendants living in Canada;
6. The Senate of Canada also failed to pass Bill S-255 to officially recognize August 1st as Emancipation Day, a day on which to annually commemorate the abolition of slavery; and
7. The Government of Canada has failed to make amends to the Afrikan/Black people of Canada by offering reparations for the systematic injury and damage outlined above.
THEREFORE We, the undersigned Canadian residents and Citizens of Canada
Call upon the House of Commons to pass a Resolution that the Government of Canada:
– Recognize and acknowledge the atrocities of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, racialized chattel slavery, and systemic anti-Black racism and their negative and deleterious effects on the Afrikan/Black people of Canada;
-Apologizes for these Crimes Against Humanity;
-Commits to instituting a process designed to identify the precise nature of the injury and damage inflicted on the Afrikan/Black people of Canada, inclusive of both the present day consequences of past injuries and new and current injuries caused by present day practices of institutionalized anti-Black racism, and to pay reparations for the wrongs that have been and continue to be inflicted.
-Formally Recognize August 1st as Emancipation Day ;
-Officially acknowledge Afrikan/Black Canadians as a distinct People.
The above is the long version of a petition to the House of Commons, co-authored by Lynn Jones, Global Afrikan Congress, Nova Scotia Chapter and Vanessa Fells, African Nova Scotian DPAD Director of Operations.
The demands are part of a larger ANS-DPAD reparations strategy, however, the rules of the petition restrict it to 250 words, therefore, we could not use the long version which is more detailed and captures our whole sentiments.
Please click here to sign the petition.