Hello, I'm Bill Blair, Canada's Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness.
Today marks International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.
Organized in 1979 by the United Nations, it aims to foster a global culture of tolerance, equality and anti-discrimination.
And it calls upon all of us to stand up against racial prejudice and intolerance.
Discrimination on the basis of race or bias cannot be tolerated in Canada.
It's contrary to our rights, and to the values that we all hold dear as Canadians.
Yet, tragically, the roots of that racism run deep in our country.
And that has led to far too many simplistic, hateful and fear-filled policies, wide-ranging impacts, including on Black and Indigenous communities.
Over the years, we have taken many steps forward.
I'm encouraged by the work being undertaken through Canada's Anti-Racism Strategy, Building a Foundation for Change.
And within my portfolio, I remain committed to ensuring that all officials in Canada's law enforcement and security agencies have access to unconscious bias, anti-racism and cultural competency training.
But we have a long way to go.
The Government is determined to uphold the principled values of inclusion, compassion, fairness and justice, and to truly tackle the systemic racism that pervades within our country.
And in marking this important day, I want to thank all Canadians for sharing the commitment to making a better, fairer and more just Canada.
Every day, it depends on each of us to build the nation that we want, together.