Asian Heritage Month throughout May is an opportunity to acknowledge and celebrate the rich history of the many diverse Asian-Canadians and their contributions to Canada and the world.
It’s important, especially during COVID-19, we recognize the invaluable contributions of people of Asian descent to Canada’s social, political, economic, scientific, and cultural landscape.
It is also a moment in which we acknowledge the resilience of people of Asian descent in Canadian history.
In 2021, we are observing Asian Heritage Month as the COVID-19 pandemic rages on. During that time, we’ve seen anti-Asian hate and racism fueled by the fear of a virus that attacks our bodies. We want to take that sentiment and flip it – “Hate is a virus.”
During this month in a period of crisis, we can remember and learn from the resistance and activism of people of East and South Asian descent.
As Canadians, we need to stand up to hate and stand in solidarity with Asian communities around the world.
That means standing with the farmers who are fighting back against the Indian government who passed three unfair farm Acts of legislation.
We also recognize and demand “paid sick days” as a reliable solution for those impacted by COVID-19, not because of their race, but because many from the communities are essential workers that have been working through this pandemic.
We used our collective voting power to vote out alt-right politicians, fanning the flames of hate to get ahead and our work ahead is to help eradicate racism and the 600% increase in reported anti-Asian hate here in Canada.
Asian Heritage Month, which began in 1993 in Toronto, is widely celebrated across the country.
Unifor recommits our work towards social justice and human rights to ensure that we can celebrate Asian heritage while combating the hate in society to ensure all people are treated with dignity, respect and solidarity.
Hate is a Virus that will not win.
Unifor will be showcasing a number of Asian and South-Asian voices throughout the month of May on social media. To take action, download our Asian Heritage Month virtual background and use this Facebook frame on social media to show that #HateisaVirus.