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January 29, 2019

Today the OFL commemorates the six worshippers who were murdered during the evening prayer at the Islamic Cultural Centre in Quebec City on January 29, 2017: Azzeddine Soufiane, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Ibrahima Barry and Abdelkrim Hassane. Many others were injured in the heinous attack.

“Communities across Canada are still reeling from the effects of this horrific act of violence, and the shameful increase in hate crimes against Muslims and other racialized groups across the country,” said OFL President Chris Buckley. “The labour movement is committed to building awareness through education and action, and to stand against discrimination and hatred that, far too often, gives rise to such acts of violence.”

Racist attacks are on the rise in Canada. 2017, hate crimes across Canada surged to an all-time high. Ontario had the most attacks, with a 207 per cent increase in hate crimes against Muslims, an 84 per cent increase in hate crimes against Black people, and 41 per cent increase in hate crimes against Jewish people. These are only the reported crimes; many go unreported.

“Islamophobia and any other kind of racism is unacceptable and despicable,” said OFL Executive Vice-President Ahmad Gaied. “We continue to call on the government to declare January 29 the Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia to recognize those who were killed, and work to stop this tragedy from repeating itself in the future.”

The OFL signed on to an open letter calling on the government to declare January 29 a Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia. To read the letter click here.

For a list of vigils across Canada click here.

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