Asian Canadians demand Derek Sloan be kicked out of the Conservative party for racist remarks
Calgary, AB- Asian Canadians demand Conservative leadership candidate be kicked out of the party for racist remarks.
A new national network, ACT2endracism, calls on political leaders to unequivocally denounce racist attacks by Conservative MP, Derek Sloan, against Chief Public Health Officer of Canada, Dr. Theresa Tam.
The racist online attack against Dr. Tam is the latest example of growing anti-Asian sentiment and violence due to Covid-19. The incidents mobilized Asian communities across Canada to form the new national network, Asian Canadians Together To End Racism (ACT2endracism). Former Alberta MLA Teresa Woo-Paw, of Action, Chinese Canadians Together Foundation:
“Dr. Theresa Tam’s steady guidance through this pandemic has reassured Canadians during this unprecedented crisis. Her professional integrity and personal loyalty to our country has been attacked because of her ethnicity.”
Human Rights lawyer Walter Chi-yan Tom, of the Chinois progressistes du Québec, agrees:
“This is race-baiting at its lowest. We cannot allow those who lead, or aspire to lead a national political party, to fan the flames of hate in our country. It’s racist to think Dr. Tam is less Canadian because she is Chinese.”
The group is calling on Members of Parliament, Senators, and political leaders, to publicly condemn anti-Asian racism. They want Conservative leader, Andrew Scheer to send a message and expel Conservative MP, Sloan from caucus. They say the ‘turn the other cheek’ attitude from political parties perpetuates ongoing oppressions of visible minorities.
We must not forget our painful history where Japanese Canadians faced Internment Camps, along with the 62 years of legislated racism with the Chinese Head Tax and Exclusion Act.
Judy Hanazawa, Greater Vancouver Japanese Canadian Citizens’ Association President, added the following:
“During the 1940’s Japanese Canadians, like my parents, endured internment and horrible injustices. Sadly, Derek Sloan’s repugnant and xenophobic accusations show how the stereotype of Asian Canadians as the perpetual untrustworthy, foreigner persists today.”
The network will work with community groups across Canada to collect data, share, develop support and resources to combat racism and hate crime.
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Calgary city council to debate safety bylaws after protests at library drag events
Calgary’s city council is set to discuss updating one bylaw and bringing in another to address protests at drag events.
The proposed changes, which are on the agenda for this week’s council meeting, include adding the word “intimidation” to the existing public behaviour bylaw.
A second bylaw, which would be called the safe and inclusive access bylaw, is also set to be debated by councillors as early as today.
It would prohibit protests within 100 metres of an entrance to a recreation facility or library and anywhere inside those facilities.
The move comes as a 36-year-old man faces criminal and bylaw charges related to a disruption during a Reading with Royalty event at a public library in February.
The family-friendly story times at libraries are led by drag queens or kings, and children are invited to dress in their best outfit, cape or crown.
Charges under the city’s public behaviour bylaw carry a maximum penalty of up to $10,000 or six months in jail.
If passed by council, the safe and inclusive access bylaw would carry the same penalty.
“Recent protests have targeted members of the (LGBTQ) community and impeding the city of Calgary’s ability to provide safe and inclusive access to city services,” reads the new bylaw proposal. “The public is entitled to access these services without being exposed to messaging or behaviour that is hateful, intimidates, harasses or discriminates.”
It lists multiple events that have led to safety concerns including: a Drag on Ice event that was postponed at the Chinook Blast festival Feb. 10; ongoing protests at Canyon Meadows aquatic and fitness centre, which is connected to Calgary Recreation’s transgender and gender diverse facility; and the children’s reading programs at public libraries.
Libraries across Canada — including Moncton, Halifax and Coquitlam, B.C. — have faced similar protests this year.
There have also been anti-drag protests outside the Tate Britain art gallery in London, as well as several bookstores and libraries in the United States.
Tennessee recently brought in a law that would ban drag shows in public spaces, starting July 1, and several other states are considering restrictions.
Across the United States, conservative activists and politicians have complained that drag contributes to the “sexualization” or “grooming” of children.
The efforts seek to smother popular “drag story hours,” at which drag queens read to kids. Organizers of LGBTQ Pride events say they put a chill on their parades.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 14, 2023.
— With files from The Associated Press
Convicted killer charged with murder of another woman had finished sentence in June
A Calgary man charged with murder in the death of a woman whose burned body was found in a park last month had completed his prison sentence for a similar killing less than a year ago.
Christopher Ward Dunlop, who is 48, was charged this week with second-degree murder and causing an indignity to a body in the death of 58-year-old Judy Maerz.
Her body was found by a passerby in Deerfoot Athletic Park on Feb. 16.
Dunlop previously pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the 2009 death of Laura Furlan, who was found dead in another Calgary park.
He was sentenced in 2015 to 6 1/2 years.
Documents from the Parole Board of Canada show Dunlop was pre-approved for statutory release in December 2019, and completed his prison sentence on June 3, 2022.
A risk assessment at the time suggested Dunlop had a low to moderate risk to reoffend.
“It is reported you took full responsibility for your offences,” said a pre-release report. “It appears that you have the motivation for continuing to maintain necessary behavioural changes to help with lowering your risk.
“The clinician reported you admitted that a significant risk factor for yourself would be feelings of rejection or being used.”
His release conditions included not consuming alcohol and not being in contact with the victim’s family.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 3, 2023.
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