Mr. Speaker, today, the Prime Minister will apologize on behalf of all Canadians for what happened to the passengers of the MS St. Louis in 1939, when 907 refugees, most of them Jewish, knocked at our door after being turned away by Cuba and the United States. Our response was famously recorded in the book by Irving Abella, None is Too Many. No one wanted to help them and this unfortunately helped validate the racism and anti-Semitism of that era. Following their unexpected return to European soil, more than one quarter of those refugees lost their lives in Nazi concentration camps. They died for two reasons: they were Jewish and they were turned away. The survivors and families of several survivors are here today for this historic moment. I sincerely hope that this lesson stays with us for a long, long time.
In the House of Commons on November 7th, 2018. See this statement in context.