In this region that we love, where we have the right to worship or not, where we have the right to love whom we want to, where our children can grow, play and learn amongst a rich diversity of faces and cultures – there is hate growing. This growing hostility is translating to violence in the communities we serve; violence rooted in ignorance and bigotry. Recently, that has manifested itself in brazen public assaults, in vandalism and death threats at local mosques, and in explicit acts of bigotry and racism in our institutions.
The increase of acts of hate in the GTA reflects a growing international influence of extreme political views and xenophobic hate groups that perpetuate intolerance, lies, and hatred against women, newcomers, Chinese, South Asian, Black and Indigenous communities, those of Jewish and Muslim and other faith groups, the LGTBQ community and those with disabilities.
Like many of you, I am saddened and angry at the violence that continues to impact our communities. Hate is a cowardly and oppressive force that exploits existing vulnerabilities and destroys the potential in people and communities. It’s the antithesis of everything that United Way works towards.
United Way stands with our colleagues and communities in condemning all forms of hatred, bigotry, and threats to individuals’ and families’ safety and well-being across the GTA. We will not waver in our commitment to work tirelessly with our network of agencies and partners to give people of all backgrounds the opportunities they need to thrive, and to make the GTA a safe and welcoming home for all.
— Daniele Zanotti, United Way Greater Toronto President & CEO