February is a time to reflect on the relationship between Black history and our engagement with the world around us. It is also time for us to be aware of the history we are writing now and what we can do to build a better future of which we can be proud.
To mark Black History Month this year, CUPW has produced a poster commemorating Hogan’s Alley, the first and last neighbourhood in Vancouver to be home to a large Black population. The history of Hogan’s Alley recalls the significant contribution of Black Canadians to the country’s advancement.
You may remember one of our previous poster commemorating the history of Africville. Both of these posters recognize that as well as recognizing individuals, part of the National Human Rights Committee’s work is to help ensure that the history and accomplishments of whole communities will never be erased or forgotten.
Black History Month is also a chance to underscore the importance of our continuing struggle for equality.
Today, in 2018, there is still anti-Black racism, disproportionate poverty levels, and ongoing police violence. Appreciating the sometimes-hidden history and achievements of Black communities is essential to being able to address these injustices around us today.
The employment and compensation statistics speak for themselves, as does the over-representation of Blacks in our penal system.
We encourage members to address anti-Black racism in their locals, workplaces and communities.
We must stand together in solidarity to work toward a future where inequality is a thing of the past and successfully counter that which threatens us. Not just in February, but everyday, and for all people.