BY VANCOUVER OBSERVER | originally published APRil 1ST, 2015
On April 17, Canada's first ever march for the Charter of Rights and Freedoms will launch in Vancouver, B.C. The march, sponsored in part by the Vancouver Observer, celebrates the anniversary of Canada's Charter rights.
After difficult histories such as residential schools, the Chinese head tax, Japanese internment and Komagata Maru incident, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms guaranteed equal rights and freedoms for all Canadian citizens, no matter what their colour or background.
But while the Charter gives Canadians equal rights in law, many Canadians still face ongoing discrimination in practice.
The Rights and Freedoms March will celebrate how far Canada has come so far, while recognizing that there's still much progress to be made.
Organizers draw inspiration from the great civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., whose struggle for equality changed the course of history.
"In parts of our world where many basic human rights are non-existent, we want to remind people how blessed we are in Canada," said King Wan, ex-Canadian Force B.C. Liaison Officer and former Commanding Officer of HMCS Discovery.
The march will help shape a Canadian identity that is genuinely respectful of all its citizens, regardless of background.