NAJC Rejects Bill C-51

The National Association of Japanese Canadians (NAJC) joins with other concerned Canadians in calling for the Government of Canada to withdraw the Anti-Terrorism Act Bill C-51.  We believe that Bill C-51 threatens Canadian civil liberties and freedoms.  The NAJC is confident that the current existing laws and powers are adequate in safeguarding our security against acts of terrorism.

In 1942 the Canadian government used the War Measures Act to forcibly displace 22,000 Canadians of Japanese ancestry to internment and labour camps and deported over 4,000 to Japan after the War – many who were born in Canada.  Public safety and ‘perceived insurrection’ were the reasons given for this extraordinary violation of human rights and citizenship at that time.  Bill C-51 allows the Canadian Security Intelligence Service to arrest those who “may” carry out an act of terrorism.  Currently law enforcement agencies can carry out an arrest if they believe that an act of terrorism “will” be carried out.  In addition, those who are seen in the eyes of the Government as threatening the “economic or financial stability of Canada” –such as those who engage in non-violent, environmental civil disobedience – fall under the proposed Anti-Terrorism Bill.

We view with alarm the dismissive rhetoric used by the Canadian Government in response to the many voices of concern that have been raised.  Such tactics are reminiscent of the hysteria created by the government of British Columbia to pressure the Canadian Government of Mackenzie King to impose the War Measures Act in World War II.  A similar scenario occurred when the Act was used in 1970 during the “crisis” in Quebec.

The Prime Minister should pause to consider the words of his predecessor:

“I know that I speak for Members on all sides of the House today in offering to Japanese Canadians the formal and sincere apology of this Parliament for those past injustices against them, against their families, and against their heritage, and our solemn commitment and undertaking to Canadians of every origin that such violations will never again in this country be countenanced or repeated.”

(Prime Minister Brian Mulroney’s remarks to the House of Commons, Sept. 22, 1988) 

For more information please contact:
National Association of Japanese Canadians
Tel: 204-943-2910


  1. Ken OhtakeMarch 17, 2015

    Good for the NAJC for speaking for clearly and unequivocally in condemning this sinister action of the Harper government and supported by the Trudeau Liberals.
    Now let us as individual Nikkei make our opposition to Bill C-51 known to our federal Members of Parliament and opinion makers. By doing so we honour our Issei and Nisei predecessors.

  2. Sidney IkedaApril 27, 2015

    Agree Am for NAJC rejection on Bill C-51

  3. Lorene OikawaOctober 13, 2015

    Bill C51 is an attack on our rights and freedoms. Tom Mulcair and the NDP voted against it and have committed to repealing it if elected to government. We have it in our power to elect a government who values human rights. If we had a progressive government in 1942, maybe our families would not have been forcibly removed, had everything taken away from them, and been incarcerated. Right now there are people who are suffering from the fear mongering, targeted for attacks, and we have a government who puts in a bill that has wide reaching powers and without oversight. We were told “never again” and yet it is happening again. We must speak up and take action. We owe it to our Issei, Nissei, to our JC community now and for future generations. We must participate in our democracy, vote, and effect the changes we need to ensure we have thriving, healthy, inclusive communities for all Canadians.

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