Paul Martin’s statement on Chinese Head Tax Not Good Enough! – Mary-Woo Sims
Mary -Woo Sims is a long time human rights advocate and a friend of
mine. She helped Gim Wong on his motorcycle Ride for Redress,
motorbiking up to Craigelacchie, the site of the “Last Spike” with him
in 2004. She is running as an NDP candidate for Port
For immediate release
Martin’s statement on Chinese Head Tax Not Good Enough!
Port Moody-Westwood-Port Coquitlam – NDP
candidate Mary Woo Sims and long time human rights advocate says Paul Martin’s
statement that he feels “deep sorrow” over the Chinese Head Tax imposed in the
late 1800’s and early 1900’s is not good enough.
In an article published in a major Chinese
daily Ming Pao on December 28, 2005, Paul Martin, who met with Chinese
community leaders in Montreal on Dec. 28, 2006 reportedly said that he felt
deep sorrow over the Chinese Head Tax and that he would take the advice of
Raymond Chan and David Emerson to review the situation after the election.
“Why won’t he just come out and apologize
to Chinese Canadians for the imposition of the Chinese Head Tax and the
subsequent Chinese Exclusion Act?” said Sims.
“They have used the words ‘deep regret’ and now ‘deep sorrow’. Why don’t they take the next step and make a
formal apology to Chinese Canadians like New Zealand’s Prime Minister the Rt.
Honourable Helen Clark did in 2002 over similar treatment in that country of
its Chinese citizens earlier in the last century?”
Sims, who has been actively working on the
Head Tax and Exclusion Act redress movement for years and who started the “Gim
Wong Ride For Redress” rode with 82 year old Wong to Craigallachie, BC in 2004
to try to bring attention to this historic injustice. “Raymond Chan has failed Head Tax payers and their descendents in
his attempts to divide Chinese community leaders on the appropriate way to
redress this issue and David Emerson’s use of a Chinese insult to describe Jack
Layton shows that he simply doesn’t understand the sensitivities of the
community” said Sims.
Sims supports canceling the deal made by
the Liberals to redress the Head Tax just before the election call. “Today in Toronto, our leader, Jack Layton
said that ‘we need to have a response from our government that starts with an
apology – an open and complete apology to the Chinese community. That has got to be the starting place for
redress.’ I agree with the stand that
my leader has taken and look forward to working with him in Parliament to
achieve a just redress for this historic racist injustice” said Sims.
For more information call: Joy Langan 604-868-6123