B.C.’s parliamentary secretary for anti-racism initiatives, Mable Elmore, issued the following statement regarding Multiculturalism Week:
“In the third week of November, people throughout British Columbia celebrate Multiculturalism Week. This is a chance for us to come together and recognize the diverse cultures that have contributed to making B.C. the vibrant community it is today.
“We are proud of our status as Canada’s most ethnically diverse province. There are more than 200 First Nations in B.C., each with its own unique traditions and history. We recognize and celebrate the diversity of Indigenous Peoples—First Nations, Métis and Inuit—who have distinct rights, cultures and interests. According to the 2021 Census, approximately 35% of people living in British Columbia identify as a visible minority.
“This diversity strengthens and enriches our society. Now more than ever, it is crucial for us to do what we can to reinforce that message. Just last week, we announced funding to support those who have been targeted by hate-motivated vandalism, as well as for a community-led racist incident helpline. These supports are part of how we are taking action against hate in B.C.
“But we know that we can’t do this work alone. There are many people throughout our province who are taking on racial inequity and fostering inter-cultural understanding—and we want to support and recognize them. Through our website, you can apply to receive funding from our Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Grants program. You can also nominate those doing great work in your communities for a Multiculturalism and Anti-Racism Award.
“We must continue to work together to make B.C. more inclusive for everyone, regardless of their ethnicity, cultural background or religion. As a woman of colour living in B.C., I count myself fortunate that I do not need to venture far from home to expand my horizons. From literature and art, to food and festivals, a new perspective is always just around the corner—and I am thankful for that.
“I hope you will join me in celebrating the cultural diversity in British Columbia by having a wonderful Multiculturalism Week!”