1st Session, 42nd Parliament,
Volume 150, Issue 33

Thursday, May 5, 2016
The Honourable George J. Furey, Speaker

Asian Heritage Month

Hon. Mobina S. B. Jaffer: Honourable senators, I rise today to celebrate the existence of Canadian diversity.

With the help and hard work of the Senate Human Resources committee, the Senate Communications Directorate and Joseph Law, the Senate honoured this very diversity by hosting its own celebration for Asian Heritage Month 2016. At the event, we were able to enjoy performances from different Asian cultures and enjoy a wide variety of music, dance and cuisine from many Asian countries, ranging from the dynamic energy of dragon and lion dances to the subtle grace of Bharatanatyam.


I also want to take this opportunity to thank the Speaker of the Senate, the Honourable George Furey, and Senators Ataullahjan, Dyck, Enverga, Martin, Ngo, Oh, Omidvar and Eaton, who contributed to the performances as well as the cuisine of their respective cultures. Their efforts showcased the beauty of their cultural traditions, and their speeches made us reflect on the contribution that Asian- Canadians have made to Canada’s growth and prosperity.

I also want to take this opportunity to acknowledge the efforts of Senator Poy, without whom we would have never been able to celebrate this event. In 2001, the senator moved a motion designating May as Asian Heritage Month. In 2002, the government adopted the motion, which is why we are lucky enough to celebrate this event.


Honourable senators, watching these cultures come together last Tuesday reminded me why I am proud to be Canadian. Our collective experience is forged in our country. Canada welcomes and embraces the different cultures that form it, as we learn from each other and make our different traditions and cultures a source of harmony. Canada is a place where my daughter can be a professional Indian Bharatanatyam dancer and my son can be a professional Scottish piper. That is the essence of our country.

Honourable senators, in the spirit of Asian Heritage Month, I invite you all to recognize and celebrate the contributions of this country’s Asian peoples. Thank you.