Clarington has sent a clear message: there’s no room for hate, hate symbols or hate speech in the community.
Clarington Council is requesting that the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO) petition the Provincial Government to enact legislation that would provide all Ontario municipalities with enforceable powers to remove symbols of hate from their communities. Council is asking that the Province review any statutes that identify hate speech and hate symbols as illegal.
Clarington also supports a motion made by the Town of Collingwood prompting the Federation of Canadian Municipalities (FCM) to ask the Federal Government to develop robust legislation strengthening the definition of hate speech and symbols. The legislation should be explicit and recognize the psychological harm that can be caused by hateful symbols. It should include provisions that all levels of government work on addressing the root causes of hate speech.
Council has also tasked Clarington Staff to work with its Diversity Advisory Committee to develop an anti-racism policy that would apply to all Staff, members of Council, and all visitors to Municipal facilities and spaces. Once adopted, the Policy will be posted in all municipal buildings, laying out Clarington’s expectations and creating a safe space so that all community members, regardless of their background, feel safe and respected. Clarington will also partner with the Diversity Advisory Committee to draft a statement sharing some context on this issue while making it clear that the promotion of hatred through speech, symbols and actions is not welcome in our community.