The Ontario Human Rights Commission has a civic duty to specifically address anti-Black racism within Ontario’s education system.
Parents of Black Children (PoBC) has called upon The Ontario Human RIghts Commission (OHRC) on numerous occasions with a direct and clear call to action. The need for a fulsome and holistic provincial inquiry into anti-Black racism within Ontario school boards specifically has been undeniable for way too long.
Despite meeting with the Ontario Human Rights Commission and giving them the opportunity to understand the need for their advocacy within this cause, it is clear that anti-Black racism within education specifically is not a priority for them at this time as they have denied our request.
This is simply not acceptable.
The Ontario Human Rights Commission was created in 1977 with the sole purpose at that time to investigate and settle complaints of discrimination in employment. The call for discrimination within education is not far away from their origin purpose.
As an organization we understand the importance of tangible evidence, data and case studies, which is why we have provided an extensive detailed report, connecting the trauma of Black families and students to the recurrences and blatant racial abusive practices of Ontario schools.
We understand that along with our fight being personal and deeply rooted, this is not a fight to be fought alone. The Ontario Human Rights Commission has a provincial duty to do everything in their power to hold our institutions accountable against acts of racial abuse in order for real progress to be made.
Although we do not discredit the work of the Ontario Human RIghts Commission, it is important to acknowledge that out of all their inquiries conducted none have been a holistic view on the anti-Black racism experienced by Black students in Ontario.
This specific issue is just as significant as the broader acknowledgment of anti-Black racist experiences previously investigated. The time is now for a specific provincial inquiry into the education focused anti-Black racism that is traumatizing and destroying the opportunity for Black children to have an equitable and safe educational experience.
Black students’ rights are human rights and their needs shouldn’t have to fit into a broad or vague depiction of anti-Black racism. Their very real experiences are worth a fulsome inquiry.
Enough is enough. The OHRC must conduct a full inquiry into anti-Black racism in Ontario schools.