The recent incident of Santina Rao, a black woman from Halifax, being accused of stealing and violently pushed to the ground by police while her children watched, was a horrific attack against Santina’s personhood and dignity. Research shows that racial discrimination has a long history of being perpetuated against women and men of colour in this province. As historians and women, we must speak out. We call on the Halifax Regional Police to take immediate action to address the culture of racism perpetuated within the force. We call on the Mayor and HRM administration to engage with Walmart and other businesses to provide advice and tools to create a workforce that is not discriminatory. We call on the Minister of Justice to take concrete action against discriminatory acts to better protect individuals and affected communities. Finally, we call on Nova Scotians to stop being bystanders and to take action that will drive change. 

Halifax Women’s History Society
Sharon MacDonald, Chair

Published in the Chronicle Herald, 2020