It was a last minute initiative with a powerful message, raise your hands against racism on the international day for the elimination of racial discrimination.
Mayor Matt Brown joined in alongside Fanshawe president Peter Devlin, Rifat Hussain chair of diversity, inclusion and anti oppression advisory committee as well as Leroy Osbourne co chair of the education committee.
Peter Devlin assured that Fanshawe College is a space for all those, regardless of race and beliefs and continues to showcase diversity through their alumni.
“At Fanshawe College we believe in helping everyone achieve their full potential, and by committing to eliminate barriers created by prejudice we can all help improve the quality of life for thousands of people throughout our region thereby allowing them to reach their full potential.”
Matt Brown touched on the history of racism and oppression, citing the tales of Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks in their fight for civil rights, however he also recognized London’s issue with racism.
“In our community we are working towards a more welcoming city, but we know everyday racism exist in London in 2017 and it’s not okay its something we need to pull together and address.”
He also praised Londoners with help in welcoming Syrian refugees into the city and raising thousands of dollars and spoke about a new diversity and inclusion strategy in an effort to make London more welcoming.
Rifat Hussain took the time to speak on unity and each and everyones role in making sure we live in a more safe and inclusive society that prospers.
“Don’t be afraid to listen. But most importantly be accepting and welcoming because at the end of the day everyone smiles in the same language.”
The anti-racism campaign is largely digital, as participants post photos of themselves to their social media channels with the hashtag #HandsAgainstRacism.
For more information about the origins of the campaign, please visit handsagainstracism.com.