September 19, 2016, following a UN meeting, the Rt. Honourable Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada, announced “significant support” for refugees and migrants around the world.
“Millions of people around the world are fleeing their homes because of conflict and persecution,” Trudeau said. “The international community must come together to address their immediate needs and to help rebuild their lives. Today’s announcement will help accomplish this by providing forcibly displaced people with much-needed supplies and services, like education for young children.”
“Canada is a nation built from the ground up by immigrants and refugees,” he also mentioned. “We have a proud history of opening our arms—and our borders—to those most in need, and we look forward to welcoming many more migrants and refugees in the coming years. We will continue to lead with warm hearts and open minds.”
Canada needs a museum of migration on the west coast to document this history of opening – and failing to open – our borders to those that needed it. In order to make sure these stories are not forgotten, and to increase awareness about migrants and refugees in need of help today, we need a museum to tell migration stories of Pacific immigrants, and our First Nations hosts. Long ago, the First Nations of Canada welcomed new migrants and our ancestors to the country. We need to remember these stories so that we can open our minds to understanding the continued struggles today.