City of Hamilton second municipality to pass motion to support Charter for Inclusive Communities*
Motion passes unanimously following arson attack on local mosque
-For Immediate Release-
(Ottawa – September 29, 2016) The National Council of Canadian Muslims (NCCM), a prominent human rights and civil liberties organization, welcomes the City of Hamilton’s endorsement of its Charter for Inclusive Communities.
Last night, Hamilton City Council unanimously passed a motion to support the Charter, previously endorsed by over a hundred local city Mayors, City Councillors, federal and provincial members of parliament, police chiefs and other institutional representatives and individuals from across Canada since it was launched last July. The City of London passed a motion to support the Charter last July.
“We welcome the City of Hamilton for being the second municipality to pass this motion and invite other cities to formally do so as well as a signal that hate and bigotry in all its forms have no place in our communities,” says Ihsaan Gardee, NCCM’s Executive Director. “The Hamilton Muslim community should also be commended for working with city council to make this happen. We invite local residents to contact the mayor and city councillors to thank them for this initiative.”
The motion was brought forward by Mayor Fred Eisenberger following the arson on the Ibrahim Jam-e Mosque earlier this month on the 15th anniversary of a firebombing of the Hindu Samaj Temple in Hamilton shortly after the tragic events of 9/11.
“In the wake of the recent arson at the Ibrahim Jam-E Mosque in our city and given our long held belief that ‘an attack on one is an attack on all’, the City of Hamilton Council‘s unanimous endorsement of the Charter was the right thing for us to do,” said the Mayor in a statement.
“This is a step in the right direction,” said Ali Ghouse, president of the Muslim Council of Greater Hamilton (MCGH). “Mayor Eisenberger and the City Council have been loud and clear to denounce Islamophobia in all its forms.”
“This endorsement not only shows that our lawmakers affirm the place of Muslims within the social fabric, but that our community is stronger together,” says Kamran Bhatti, a Hamilton-based NCCM volunteer and a board member of several local community organizations including the North American Spiritual Revival (NASR) and MCGH. “This action stands as a testament to the commitment of Hamilton being an inclusive and safe space for all people. It affirms that the dignity of all people regardless of race, sexual identity, gender or religion, is essential to a healthy and prosperous society.”
WHEREAS, the Ibrahim Jam-E Mosque was recently the subject of arson on
the 15-year anniversary of the Hindu Samaj Temple firebombing in Hamilton
WHEREAS, the National Council of Canadian Muslims has issued a charter that condemns Islamophobia, which like all other forms of racism, xenophobia and hatred, ‘has no place in Canadian society,’
WHEREAS, the City of Hamilton has long held that, ‘an attack on one is an attack on all’,
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED:
That the City of Hamilton indicates its support for the ‘Canadian values of equality, respect, justice and the dignity of all persons’ by signing the Charter for Inclusive Communities and ‘committing to standing up for the rights and dignities of everyone in order to promote inclusive, just, and respectful communities in Canada’.
- A previous version of this news release reported that the City of Hamilton was the first municipality to pass a motion supporting the Charter. The City of London, Ontario, passed a motion in July. We commend both city councils for their efforts to support inclusive communities.