Mohamed Omar, Yahoo, April 9, 2019
Toronto-based Harmony Movement will have to lay off 11 full-time staff, Cheuk Kwan, the group’s executive director, told HuffPost Canada. Founded in 1994, the organization facilitated equity-focused, anti-racism workshops for 59 out of 60 English school boards in the province.
The Ontario government informed the group last December that it would no longer be receiving provincial funding, Kwan said.
“This is unfortunate, because if you look at the  Quebec mosque shooting and then now you look at [Christchurch], more and more … we are under the threat of white supremacy. We need to deal more with this kind of threat beyond the three Rs and getting your math and English right,” Kwan said.
According to Statistics Canada data released last November, hate crimes in 2017 were up 47 per cent compared to the year prior, with most of the incidents targeting Muslim, Jewish, and black populations. Most of that jump was seen in Ontario and Quebec. Before that, StatCan data pointed to a 253 per cent increase in police-reported hate crimes against Muslims between 2012 and 2015, according to Global News.
Since 2011, Harmony Movement received between $200,000 and $300,000 annually — funds tied to the former Liberal government inclusive education strategy. It funded interactive workshops covering topics such as Islamophobia, LGBTQ issues and anti-Indigenous racism.