OTD: Happy Canadian Multiculturalism Day!

Today is Canadian Multiculturalism Day!

On Nov. 13, 2002, the Government of Canada designated June 27 of each year as Canadian Multiculturalism Day, which provides Canadians with an opportunity to celebrate our diversity as well as our commitment to democracy, equality and mutual respect. It’s also a day to appreciate the contributions of the various multicultural groups and communities that comprise Canadian society.

This year, to mark the 150th anniversary of Confederation, Canadian Multiculturalism Day, there will be festivities taking place in various communities from coast to coast as well as major celebrations in three Canadian cities. Live performances showcasing well-known artists from various Canadian cultural communities are on the program.

Designer Friedrich Peter also designed this 30-cent stamp (SC #915) honouring Terry Fox.

1990 MULTICULTURALISM STAMP

On April 5, 1990, Canada Post issued a 39-cent stamp (Scott #1270) in celebration of Canadian multiculturalism. The stamp was issued in conjunction with the opening of “A Coat of Many Colours,” an exhibit that was displayed at the Canadian Museum of Civilization (now the Canadian Museum of History) in Hull, Qué.

Vancouver-based designer Friedrich Peter used Canada’s emblem—the maple leaf—to create a mosaic design to represent the country’s diverse cultures and ethnic groups. Dynamic shapes of colour, which are resemblant of the official Canada 150 logo, combine to create a background revealing a maple leaf. The word multiculturalism is steel-engraved in black.

Peter also designed the Constitution stamp of 1982 (SC #916) and the Terry Fox stamp of 1982 (SC #915), among other Canadian stamp issues.

PRIME MINISTER’S STATEMENT

“Today, Canadians from coast to coast to coast join together to celebrate the multiculturalism and openness that make us who we are as a country,” said Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in a statement released this morning. “Canadians come from every corner of the world, speak two official languages and hundreds more, practice many faiths, and represent many cultures. Multiculturalism is at the heart of Canada’s heritage and identity—and as Canadians, we recognize that our differences make us strong.”

“Canada’s strong tradition of multiculturalism has allowed our society to benefit from fresh perspectives and find new answers to old problems. It has also helped Canada attract some of the most innovative and entrepreneurial people from around the world, showing that openness is the engine of both creativity and prosperity,” said Trudeau.

“This year, we mark both the 150th anniversary of Confederation and the 35th anniversary of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. These milestones remind us of the values that unite us – openness, inclusion, and deep respect for our differences. Whoever we are, wherever we come from, these values bring us together as equal members of this great country.”

“On behalf of the Government of Canada, Sophie and I wish all those celebrating a happy, fun, and educational Multiculturalism Day. I invite Canadians to take part in the many activities happening across the country, and I ask all of us to work even harder to protect and promote multiculturalism. Today, and every day, let us celebrate the differences that make Canada strong, diverse, inclusive, and proud.”

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