June 27, 2016 – OTTAWA.
“I am pleased to bring greetings to all Canadians on this Multiculturalism Day,” stated Paul Grod, National President of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress (UCC). “Multiculturalism has become one of the most fundamental values that defines Canada as a nation, and the Ukrainian Canadian community feels very proud to have been instrumental in its development and adoption some 45 years ago.”
Multiculturalism stands as one of the defining principles of our country. For 125 years, Ukrainians have lived in Canada – here we have found freedom and have nurtured our language, culture and traditions – contributing to and enriching the fabric and mosaic of Canadian society.
As Prime Minister Justin Trudeau recently stated, “Canada’s greatest strength is in its diversity, and I’m proud to see multiculturalism flourish in communities right across this great country, as shown time and time again by the extraordinary strength of Ukrainian Canadians who see no contradiction in being proud Ukrainians and proud Canadians at the same time.”
Senator Paul Yuzyk and his wife, Mary, speaking with Prime Minister P.E. Trudeau, after he announced the policy of multiculturalism at the Ukrainian Canadian Congress in Winnipeg, October 9,1971. Photo c/o www.yuzyk.com/
Ukrainian Canadians were at the forefront of the movement supporting the adoption of the policy of multiculturalism. A Ukrainian Canadian, the late Senator Paul Yuzyk, is widely recognized as the “father of multiculturalism.” Canada’s policy of multiculturalism was announced at the Triennial Congress of Ukrainian Canadians by Prime Minister Pierre Elliot Trudeau in 1971.
Today, we celebrate both our unity as Canadians and our diverse cultural backgrounds and traditions, recognizing that our country’s strength lies in the fact that though we may come from different parts of the world – we are all equal citizens of our shared country.
To view Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s remarks to the Canada Ukraine Business Forum, where he addresses multiculturalism, please see http://www.cpac.ca/en/programs/headline-politics/episodes/47794949/