Click here for the Gim Wong Ride for Redress updates on this webpage.
Here is the press release about the
Friday June 17th Press Conference for Gim Wong in Winnipeg.
GIM WONG'S 'RIDE FOR REDRESS'
Seeking Justice from the Government of Canada for victims of the
Chinese Head Tax and Exclusion Act
Friday, June 17, 11:30 am
The Winnipeg Chinese Cultural And Community Centre at 2ND FL.,
June 15, 2005 –
B'nai Brith Canada, The Winnipeg Chinese Cultural and Community Centre and The Ad Hoc Winnipeg Organizing Committee For
Redress are delighted to welcome and introduce Mr. Gim Wong to members of
Gim Foon Wong, at 83 years of age is riding his motorcycle across
Canada to bring a message to all Canadians about how Canada's infamous
Chinese Head Tax and Exclusion Act devastated Chinese Canadian families
for generations. In force from 1885 until 1947, this legislation
plunged the Chinese community in Canada into more than 62 years of debt
and family separation.
Gim was born in Vancouver's Strathcona neighbourhood and is a World War
II Canadian Air Force veteran. His father and uncles paid the head tax
when they came to Canada as 11 and 12-year-olds in the early 1900's.
“They were forced to work for slave wages,” he says. “I want to do this
ride for the Chinese railway workers and all those Chinese pioneers. I
want to do it for my good friend Charlie Kwan, who is a head tax payer
living in Vancouver. Charlie is 99 years old. I want to do it for my
family. This ride is about demanding respect for the generations of
Chinese Canadians who built this country. This ride is about demanding
an apology and redress from the Canadian government.”
As he visits communities across the country, Gim will hold local
information sessions about Canada's history of discrimination against
Chinese Canadians. Gim, accompanied by his son Jeffrey, began the 'Ride
for Redress' in Victoria in June 3, stopping in Vancouver, Calgary,
Regina, Winnipeg, Sudbury, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.
Gim is scheduled to arrive in Ottawa by July 1- Canada Day.
For many years, Chinese Canadians referred to Canada Day as Humiliation
Day, because it was on July 1, 1923 that the Canadian Government
enacted the Chinese Exclusion Act. The Act virtually excluded all
persons of Chinese descent from coming to Canada and was not repealed
until 1947. The 24 years of Chinese exclusion separated families,
condemned generations of men to a life of isolation and loneliness and
acutely impeded the economic and political development of Chinese
communities in Canada. Legislated discrimination against Chinese
Canadians started in the form of a Chinese Head Tax in 1885, right
after they helped build and complete the Western section of the
Canadian Pacific Railway.
For further information about the 'Ride for Redress',
Dr. Joseph Du at 943.2627 or David Matas at 944.1831 or
Alan Yusim at 487.9623
The Ad Hoc Winnipeg Organizing Committee For Redress