Betty Hinton, MP Masthead
Member of Parliament for Kamloops Thompson Cariboo
[press releases]
Canada Coat of Arms

Canada Needs To Take Stand

August 9, 2001
KAMLOOPS - Multiculturalism Critic Betty Hinton reacted strongly today to the Canadian government's continuing lack of response to a controversy over the upcoming UN World Conference Against Racism in South Africa. "Several countries are threatening to boycott the conference unless anti-Israeli references and demands for reparations over past racist actions are eliminated," said the Opposition member.

"The United States, Britain and others have taken a clear position on these issues," stated Mrs. Hinton.

"There are some very strong words being proposed for inclusion in the draft declaration and the situation continues to heat up, but the only response from Canadian Multiculturalism Minister Hedy Fry is that she won't respond until the text has been finalized."

"Ms. Fry, who should be the federal government's most vocal racism fighter, doesn't even have an opinion on the appropriateness of bringing this type of language to an anti-racism conference," said Mrs. Hinton.

"Canada can't expect to be taken seriously on the world stage if our government won't even state its position on matters like this. Ms. Fry is quite willing to stand up in Parliament and malign Canadians over imaginary racist cross-burnings, and yet she and her government clearly don't have the backbone to stand up on the world stage and voice an opinion on this very real issue.
The Liberal government is once again relegating Canada to the background."

As for the Official Opposition's position on this issue, Mrs. Hinton stated very clearly, "The UN World Conference Against Racism is supposed to be about trying to eliminate racism and work toward world harmony in the present. It should NOT be about recriminations or demands for retribution over past wrongs. On that basis, we support only the inclusion of declarations at the conference that would meet these goals."

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For more information contact:
Office of Betty Hinton (250) 851-4991


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