President’s Message, July 2009

An “Amazing Feet” is happening in Winnipeg on June 18 – June 21. The event is a kick-off to invite Winnipeggers and the rest to the country to leave an imprint of their foot or hand as the construction of the Canadian Museum of Human Rights begins to take off. A few months ago, during an archaeological dig, an 800-year-old imprint of a human foot was discovered. The event is intended to have people make an imprint of their hand or foot. These imprints will then be put in a time capsule and placed in the construction site as a new imprint of history is created. For those individuals wanting to participate but are unable to attend, the website of the Canadian Museum of Human Rights ( allows people to make an imprint through this media. I will be volunteering at this event and look forward to many people supporting the work of the Canadian Museum of Human Rights.

The NAJC Human Rights Committee welcomes Lillian Nakamura Maguire to our committee. Lillian is a Human Rights Educator for the Yukon Human Rights Commission, and is currently finishing a four-year term on the Board of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation. She brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to the work of our committee. The Human Rights Committee is planning a teleconference in July/09, to assess the progress of our projects and to review the on-going activities of the committee.  Remember to register for the conference, “Honouring Our People- Stories of Internment” in Vancouver, from September 25-27th.

The NAJC has had discussions with the Canadian War Museum over the past few years, regarding the Japanese Canadian exhibit of the events during World War II. Grace Eiko Thomson, on behalf of the NAJC, has been the liaison with the Museum and has submitted various changes to the Exhibit that would reflect a balanced view of the wartime experience and accurately portray a perspective from the community that underwent the injustices inflicted upon us during that time.

The Emperor and Empress of Japan are visiting Canada during the first part of July. Their Majesties’ visit coincides with the 80th anniversary of Japan/Canada relations. Although their contact with the Japanese Canadian communities will be brief, it is nonetheless an important occasion to celebrate the peace and harmony that is generated amongst nations when these visits occur. Recently, Japan has organized many goodwill trips to Japan for Japanese Canadians, to educate and increase the awareness of modern-day Japan.

The National Executive Board will be having their regular quarterly meeting in Vancouver on August 15-16th, in preparation for the AGM in Vancouver on October 17th and 18th. Please submit any resolutions, motions, to the NAJC office, by July 16th.

Summer has arrived in Winnipeg, so enjoy!

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