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Ontario pass Tamil Genocide Education Week bill

Photo of Scarborough-Rouge Park MPP Vijay Thanigasalam

Ontario has passed Bill 104, the Tamil Genocide Education Week Act, recognising the genocide against Tamils in Sri Lanka and establishing May 11 to 18 as a week in which Ontarians “are encouraged to educate themselves about, and to maintain their awareness of, the Tamil genocide and other genocides that have occurred in world history.”

Scarborough-Rouge Park MPP Vijay Thanigasalam responded to the passage of the bill stating on Twitter:

Sinthughan Shanmugalingam, vice president of campaigns for the Canadian Tamil Youth Alliance, responded to the passage of the bill stating:

“Ontario is sending a loud and clear message, as the first jurisdiction to acknowledge the Tamil Genocide,”  

Shanmugalingam added:

“With the passing of this Bill, Tamils can begin the healing process, and encourage Ontarians to learn about the Tamil genocide, and other genocides that have taken place around the world.”

In a statement the National Council of Canadian Tamil (NCCT) responded to the bill by stating:

“This acknowledgement not only seeks to honour the lives that were lost with the Tamil Genocide, but also gives a sense of hope to those who have suffered life-long intergenerational trauma and represents the first step to healing and reconciliation. By recognizing the Tamil Genocide, we affirm our collective desire to maintain awareness of this genocide and other genocides to prevent such crimes against humanity from happening again”.

The NCCT further noted that the measure was introduced by Thanigasalam and that they had led advocacy alongside the Canadian Tamil Youth Alliance (CTYA) and Tamil Youth Organization (TYO). They further thanked "the continued collective effort, many organizations, individuals, and volunteers took part in this effort. The Canadian Tamil Academy (CTA), Arivaham Canada, Mississauga Tamil Association (MTA), Brampton Tamil Association (BTA), Markham Tamil Organization (MTO), Scarborough Tamil Association (STA), Ottawa Tamil Association (OTA), and Quebec Tamil Development Association (QTDA)".

Read their full statement here.

A statement by the Canadian Tamil Youth Alliance further highlighted that “the very existence of Tamil people in our traditional homeland continues to be threatened by the ongoing genocide sponsored by the Sri Lankan state.”

Read their full statement here.

Read more here.

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