Opinion Editorial on TVO.org: COVID-19 fears are fanning the flames of racism in Kenora – OHRC

Opinion Editorial on TVO.org: COVID-19 fears are fanning the flames of racism in Kenora – OHRC

by ahnationtalk on March 3, 202139 Views

One year ago, when the world first learned about COVID-19, the Ontario Human Rights Commission issued a statement denouncing the harassment and scapegoating of East Asians, who were wrongly assumed to be carriers of the coronavirus. At the outset of the pandemic’s second wave, I released a statement condemning the escalating xenophobia and hate rippling across Ontario, again seemingly related to COVID-19 fear and fatigue. Regrettably, as we face an inevitable third wave filled with anxiety about highly infectious variants, discriminatory fearmongering seems to once again be in full swing and targeting some of our most vulnerable populations.

Recent ugly and disturbing events in Kenora reveal that some people are using COVID-19-related stress and insecurity as an excuse to propagate misinformation, inflame fears, stigmatize, and sow distrust toward already historically disenfranchised groups.

On February 10, 2021, Wabaseemoong Independent Nations leadership notified the public that several community members had tested positive for COVID-19. This community, located about 100 kilometres north of Kenora with a population of approximately 2,000 people, immediately went into lockdown with checkpoints and curfews. Government and some local agencies mobilized supports, and roughly 24 isolation beds were made available in Kenora for people who were unable to isolate in Wabaseemoong.

Read More: http://www.ohrc.on.ca/en/news_centre/opinion-editorial-tvoorg-covid-19-fears-are-fanning-flames-racism-kenora

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