Yesterday in Parliament – December 4, 2018
House of Commons
Statements by Members
Mr. Speaker, Statistics Canada reports that last year the number of hate crimes increased by almost 50%. We now know, all too well, that online hate can lead to real-life violence.
At this time of Hanukkah, Jews gather with family to celebrate the festival of lights. They light candles to dispel darkness. Yet this year, their celebrations are marred by sadness since the darkness of anti-Semitism has spread, even in Canada. Jewish, Muslim, black and LGBTQ2 communities have all been increasingly targeted. Hate has grown, especially online, since the Internet enables the hateful to find one another.
B’nai Brith’s excellent “eight-point plan to tackle antisemitism” calls for a national action plan.
In our common humanity, Canadians of good will must urgently band together to counter the forces of hate and division. Government must speak out against bigotry. Our government must also work with the communities affected to investigate, punish and prevent these crimes of hate. Enough is enough.
Note: On November 30, 2018, we inadvertently omitted the following statement by Mr. David Sweet (CPC):
Jewish Refugee Day
Mr. Speaker, this year has been a particularly difficult one for the global Jewish community. The attack on the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh last month, as well as too many other anti-Semitic events even here in Canada, are a painful reminder that the fight against anti-Semitism endures.
Today, on Jewish Refugee Day, we commemorate the 850,000 Jews across the Middle East who were displaced from their homes in Arab countries and Iran as a result of racism and religious persecution during the 1940s to the 1970s.
As part of the annual commemoration, B’nai Brith is doing truly outstanding work in honouring and educating people on the horrors that Jewish families and individuals have faced, while also promoting awareness of many other great injustices.
On behalf of my parliamentary colleagues, I want to assure the Canadian Jewish community that we remember the Jewish refugees forced from their homes on this day of commemoration, and that we will always fight against anti-Semitism and racism in all of its forms, here at home and around the world.