Mr. Speaker, this is Black History Month.
In Hamilton the achievements of African Canadian residents are celebrated at the annual John C. Holland awards. In 1954, Reverend Holland was our first ever citizen of the year. In 2006, a poll of Hamiltonians named the hon. Lincoln Alexander the greatest Hamiltonian ever.
Twenty-six years ago, a 16-year-old refugee from Somalia arrived in Hamilton, attended Sir John A. Macdonald high school, starred on the track team and quickly assimilated into Canadian life, so much so that he now sits in this House as a minister of the Crown and member for York South—Weston.
We are lucky to have a growing francophone population thanks to immigration from francophone African countries.
Judging by the young award winners and nominees this past Saturday night, Hamilton's black community will have many more leaders to celebrate as these young people take their place in all levels of Canadian society, the true legacy of Black History Month.