More Chinese Head Tax Stories in Media for June 15


More Chinese Head Tax Stories in Media for June 15

More medial stories as everything heats up.  Sid Tan is saying that the compensation package IS a tax refund, and that “governement should not be allowed to profit from racism.”

Hmmm…. Symbolic Tax Refund for Chinese Head Tax…. retroactive… or to make it fair… retroactive charge all non-Chinese immigrants since 1885.

Mary Woo Sims says:

“Chinese descendants don't just want an apology for the head tax,
they also want an apology for the Chinese Exclusion Act that stopped
all immigration from China for 30 years starting in 1923.
They took away all choice for families to reunite when they imposed the Chinese Exclusion Act”

Gim Wong says: 

“Our parents were slaves,” the 83-year-old Wong said yesterday as he
talked about why the descendants of those who paid a head tax should
receive compensation from government.

“Do not the children of slaves suffer?” he asked. “It's not easy to talk about, OK?”

Technially…. many of the Chinese pioneers were indentured labourers, as they had borrowed money to come to Canada, then had to work it off.  Many of the pioneers who signed up to build the railroad were also indentured labourers – but the CPR reneged on the promise to provide passage back to China, leaving many to further work to try to raise more money.

– Todd

June 15, 2006

Chinese ride rails to accept apology

By SHARON HO, SUN MEDIA

Chinese head tax payers are set to ride the rails to Ottawa to finally
get an apology for having to pay a racist a tax in order to immigrate
to Canada.
Surviving payers and widows will leave
Vancouver tomorrow on a “redress train” with the last spike used to
make Canada's railroad.
About 100 people will travel from Toronto to Ottawa for the apology from the Canadian government on June 22.
The Chinese were pivotal in building the railroad, completed in 1885.
The government, however, rewarded Chinese immigrants by imposing the
head tax of $50. The tax was later increased to $100 in 1900 and $500
in 1903.
It was abolished in 1923 and replaced by Exclusion Act, which ended in 1947.
“We will bring the last spike to the railway committee room where the
decision to build the railway was made,” said Susan Eng, co-chairman of
the Ontario Coalition of Chinese Head Tax Payers and Families.
About 20 head tax payers, 270 widows and a few thousand of their
children are alive. Most of the payers and widows are unable to travel
to Ottawa.

http://calsun.canoe.ca/News/National/2006/06/15/pf-1633729.html

http://torontosun.com/News/Canada/2006/06/15/1633562-sun.html

Apology must come with redress
Jun. 15, 2006. 01:00 AM


Harper will apologize for head tax on Chinese


June
14.As the son of a Chinese head tax payer, I completely agree with MP
Olivia Chow that compensation must accompany the apology. Without
compensation there is no justice and no reconciliation. The Prime
Minister must deliver on the promised redress of the head tax.In
addition, redress must be fair, substantial and just. Whole families
were affected — husbands, wives as well as their children. The head
tax financially disadvantaged families and with the Chinese Exclusion
Act, many families were separated and even torn apart. The redress
package must recognize these hardships and financially compensate the
families in a fair and just manner.


Doug Hum, Toronto

http://www.thestar.com/NASApp/cs/ContentServer?pagename=thestar/Layout/Article_PrintFriendly&c=Article&cid=1150321811405&call_pageid=970599119419

June 15, 2006

Head-tax apology on its way
By JOHN PIGEON, 24 HOURS
What is an apology worth?
If you ask Sid Tan, president of the Chinese Canadians for Equality and
Solidarity Society, he says the June 22 apology to Chinese head-tax
payers their spouses and descendants is about restoring justice and
honour.
But he will also tell you that the apology is more
than words being said, it's about righting the wrongs that led to Prime
Minister Stephen Harper's apology.
“This is a tax refund,
this is not compensation,” Tan said. “No organization and no individual
in Canada should be able to profit from racism and keep the proceeds.”
For 83-year-old head tax descendant Gim Wong, redress is important
because it was the tax that was the harshest of racist Canadian
policies which lasted until the 1940s.
“Out of 100
nationalities, ethnic groups and religious groups from the separate
world, Chinese were the only ones that had to pay a head tax,” Wong
said. “Slaves were worth something you could sell a slave if you didn't
want them, they [Chinese Canadians during the exclusion act] were not
even a dime a dozen.”
Gim Wong will ride the VIA train to Ottawa tomorrow to hear the prime minister apologize in the House of Commons.

http://vancouver.24hrs.ca/News/2006/06/15/1633456-sun.html

Chinese seeking compensation

By CP

VANCOUVER
— Gim Wong wasn't alive in 1906 when his father paid a $500 head tax
to get into Canada, but his voice is raw with emotion when he talks
about the work it took and the discrimination his family faced to
survive in Canada.
Wong and several Chinese Canadian
groups are expecting Prime Minister Stephen Harper will apologize for
the head tax during a speech in the House of Commons next Thursday, but
they want to know the apology will come with compensation.
The federal government hasn't made any commitment to that.
“Our parents were slaves,” the 83-year-old Wong said yesterday as he
talked about why the descendants of those who paid a head tax should
receive compensation from government.
“Do not the children of slaves suffer?” he asked. “It's not easy to talk about, OK?”

http://lfpress.ca/newsstand/News/National/2006/06/15/pf-1633324.html

Chinese groups say money should come with federal government head-tax apology at 19:38 on June 14, 2006, EST.
VANCOUVER (CP) – Gim Wong wasn't alive in 1906 when his father paid a
$500 head tax to get into Canada, but his voice is raw with emotion
when he talks about the work it took and the discrimination his family
faced to survive in Canada.
Wong and several Chinese Canadian groups are expecting Prime Minister Stephen Harper will apologize for the head tax
during a speech in the House of Commons next Thursday, but they want to know the apology will come with compensation.
The federal government hasn't made any commitment to that.
“Our
parents were slaves,” the 83-year-old Wong said Wednesday as he talked
about why the descendants of those who paid a head tax should receive
compensation from government.
“Do not the children of slaves suffer?” he asked. “It's not easy to talk about, OK.”
Sid
Tan from ACCESS – the Association of Chinese Canadians for Equality and
Solidarity Society – told a news conference Wednesday the redress issue
isn't about money, it's about justice and honour.
“This is
a tax refund, this is not compensation,” he stressed. “We are asking
the Harper government for our rightful return of head-tax money because
no government. . .should be able to profit from racism.”
More than 81,000 Chinese paid the head tax ranging from $50
and $500 between 1885 and 1923.
But just 20 of those who directly paid and another 260 of their spouses are still alive.
About 4,000 descendants of the head tax payers have registered with advocacy groups.
Mary-Woo Sims from the B.C. Coalition of Head Taxpayers says there are
thousands more who have lost the head-tax certificate from their
fathers or grandfathers.
“We've heard a lot of very sad
stories from individuals who come with a tattered photograph of their
ancestor, but no more documentation.”
Sims said several
groups have made compensation suggestions to the federal government of
between $20,000 to $39,000 per individual.
“I think anything that is less than that would probably cause us to question the sincerity of the government.”
She
added Chinese descendants don't just want an apology for the head tax,
they also want an apology for the Chinese Exclusion Act that stopped
all immigration from China for 30 years starting in 1923.
“They took away all choice for families to reunite when they imposed the Chinese Exclusion Act,” she said.

http://www.940news.com/nouvelles.php?cat=23&id=61491

http://www.canada.com/nationalpost/news/story.html?id=f2b0825e-6080-4036-90c3-befc7099effc&k=82520

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