Statement Article from  Canadian Heritage

Statement by Minister Joly on Black History Month

OTTAWA, February 1, 2017

Every February, Canadians mark Black History Month, a celebration of the remarkable achievements of Black Canadians and the contributions they have made to our country. Throughout our history Black Canadians have helped shape society as leaders, activists, educators, entrepreneurs, military and sport heroes, and cultural icons.

For example, Viola Desmond, a Nova Scotian businesswoman, changed the course of Canadian history by refusing to leave a whites-only area of a movie theatre in 1946. In tribute to her impact on the human rights and freedoms movement in Canada, the Government of Canada recently chose her as the face for Canada’s ten‑dollar bank note and Black History Month poster.

This year, the 150th anniversary of Confederation provides us with a unique opportunity to learn more about the important role Black Canadians have played in shaping our country. As Minister of Canadian Heritage and Minister responsible for Multiculturalism, I encourage all Canadians to participate in the many Black History Month celebrations taking place in 2017.

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Pierre-Olivier Herbert
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Office of the Minister of Canadian Heritage
819-997-7788


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Hon. Mélanie Joly Canadian Heritage Arts, Music, Literature

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