It is painfully clear that schools have not been adequately addressing issues of race and racism. Here are some suggested resources for educators with an emphasis on the upcoming Black History Month.
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In 2015, a statue of John A. Macdonald was installed on the public sidewalk of Picton’s Main Street. Macdonald was a colonizer whose impacts on Indigenous communities continue to be felt in the present. He legislated residential schools, made starvation government policy, hung their leaders, banned the potlatch, instituted a pass system and created the RCMP to remove Indigenous people from their lands, and much more. He created the racist “head tax” system for Chinese immigrants and used their lower-paid labour to do more dangerous and deadly work in creating the national railway. He did other things too but we do not believe the good cancels out the bad. Honouring and celebrating someone responsible for these things is offensive, painful and not reflective of the kind of community we aspire to be.
All Welcome Here works with our local schools and our school board to improve inclusive teaching, address racism in the schools and improve the lives of BIPOC students in the County.
We also work to educate our community on anti-racism issues.
Prince Edward County is an agricultural community and migrant workers are a part of our community. Workers come to the County from all over the world, predominantly the Caribbean and south Asia. The federal migrant worker program denies them minimum wage and access to basic worker rights and they have been especially vulnerable to Covid-19. They are denied access to social services and immigration status and their right to be in Canada is tied to a single employer. This system is set up with a massive power imbalance and a huge potential for abuse.