Mr. Speaker, February 12, 2004 marks the sixth annual Black History Month program in Ottawa. The theme of the program is “Keepers of the Story: Making a Difference--the Power of Choice”.
This history in the street is a contemporary tribute to historic persons who laid the foundation for our human rights culture in Canada. They include Lieutenant-Governor John Graves Simcoe, Chief Justice William Osgoode, Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, the Hon. George Brown, Isabella Brown and Lord Elgin.
In 1793 Lieutenant-Governor John Graves Simcoe and his cabinet passed the first anti-slave trade bill in the British Empire and opened the way to the underground railroad movement to Canada. It was our nation's first anti-discrimination legislation.
The 12th of February honours Nelson Mandela, an honorary citizen of Canada who opted for reconciliation after walking to freedom in Africa on February 11, 1990.
This initiative of the J'Nikira Dinqinesh Education Centre is presented with Dalhousie University's chair of Black Canadian Studies, Library and Archives Canada, with assistance from the Ottawa--