Judy Haiven looks back on the racist reign of terror at Halifax Transit. How could this reign of terror go on for 14 plus years? How could a Black man become unemployed and then die due to the stress of living with the anger and threats directed at him by racist co-workers? How could a white man and his Black wife receive such soul-destroying treatment for the mere crime of loving each other? When will anyone step up to explain what happened and how it won’t happen again?
“What bothers me the most in all of this is that city lawyers advanced this argument that the racist slurs directed at Y.Z. were protected under free speech provisions.” We talk with Equity Watch spokesperson and lawyer Connor Smithers-Mapp about how unions, councillors and management continue to evade the issues of racism, homophobia and misogyny at the City’s workplaces.
It’s not just the hastily cancelled entirely white panel on diversity, Saint Mary’s University has a long history of not taking a meaningful stand on diversity and human rights, former SMU professor Judy Haiven writes.
Evelyn C. White profiles Giovanni Johnson, microbiologist and the only person of African descent employed as an assistant brewer in the booming Nova Scotia craft beer industry. “I grew up eating fresh coconut, mango, watermelon, kiwi, etc., in the Bahamas,” he said. “So it’s natural for me to develop recipes that include tropical notes. I think people like them, too.”
Raymond Sheppard: “It is African Heritage Month. Our struggles continue, yet now it is time to celebrate our glorious history. It is also time for the government of Nova Scotia to step up to the plate and do the right thing as it pertains to African Nova Scotians.”
A newly formed group wants police and Halifax Transit to take verbal and physical incidents of racist violence on buses and in public spaces everywhere much more seriously. The problem isn’t new, but lately it’s been getting worse.
Stacey Dlamini, mother of the young Black man shot with a high-velocity nail gun, writes about racism and complicity, “I wonder how the story might have turned out had someone on Nhlanhla’s crew said to the person who shot him, “Hey, why don’t you leave the kid alone?” What if they’d come up to Nhlanhla and said, “You know man, you don’t have to accept this kind of treatment. Let’s do something about it together.” What if someone had shown him some compassion or solidarity? Or even in the aftermath, some empathy? This experience would feel different for us.”
Earlier this week we reported on the Halifax rally in support of Nhlanhla Dlamini, the young Black man shot with a high velocity nail gun by a co-worker. Here is a transcription of an excellent speech delivered by Angie Bowden at that rally, wherein she addresses the impact of such racist acts on the entire Black community in Nova Scotia, and especially also on its youths.
About 80 people rallied this afternoon at the the Maritime Centre, home of the Department of Labour and Advanced Education. They were there to protest anti-Black racism in workplaces anywhere, and especially to support Nhlanhla Dlamini, the young Black man shot with a high velocity nail gun by a co-worker employed with PQ Properties Limited of New Glasgow, Nova Scotia on September 18. The man who shot Dlamini should be charged with attempted murder and hate crimes, rally organizers say.
Raymond Sheppard, representing African Nova Scotian City workers, and members of Equity Watch held a joint press conference to argue that in terms of bullying and racism there is no political will among senior management to truly address the issues, and that it is time for an independent third party, like the City’s Auditor General, to hold an inquiry.