Supporting victim services for Muslim communities in London, Ontario
September 29, 2023 – London, Ontario – Department of Justice Canada
Canadians expect to live in a society where the criminal justice system is fair and impartial and supports the needs of victims. The Government of Canada is committed to protecting every Canadian’s rights and improving access to justice for Canadians.
Today, the Honourable Kamal Khera, Minister of Diversity, Inclusion, and Persons with Disabilities, on behalf of the Honourable Arif Virani, Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada, accompanied by Arielle Kayabaga, Member of Parliament for London West, Mohammed Hashim, Executive Director of the Canadian Race Relation Foundation (CRRF), and Mohammed Baobaid, Executive Director of the Muslim Resource Centre for Social Support and Integration Inc. (MRCSSI), announced funding for the MRCSSI’s Culturally Integrative Coordinated Community Support Program.
This project provides culturally appropriate counselling services to families, individuals and victims of the Muslim communityaffected by the horrific killing of Our London Family in Ontario in 2021. As the ongoing trial of the accused person revives traumas, this funding aims to ensure increased victims support for the London Muslim community.
The MRCSSI is a not-for-profit social services and anti-violence organization whose mission is centred around nurturing caring communities to assist families and individuals in overcoming challenges, managing conflict and ensuring safety and wellbeing. Its Culturally Integrative Coordinated Community Support Program project provides culturally appropriate services to the Muslim community, including counselling, therapeutic groups, workshops and increased awareness initiatives and engagement.
Justice Canada is providing the MRCSSI with $202,131 over one fiscal year (2023-2024) through the Victims Fund for its Culturally Integrative Coordinated Community Support Program. CRRF is also providing the MRCSSI with $60,000 over two fiscal years (2023-2025) to support this program.
“We aim to extend much-needed culturally integrative support and counselling to the community through this program. This partnership stands as a beacon of hope, healing, and unity in the face of adversity, emphasizing the commitment to creating safer and stronger communities for all.”
Executive Director, Muslim Resource Centre for Social Support and Integration Inc.
“At the heart of our government’s stance in the fight of hatred and violence lies our commitment to providing compassionate support to victims of hate crimes. The tragic loss of Our London Family is also a stark reminder of the importance of building communities where tolerance and acceptance prevail, and where victims are heard and can find the support they need. This funding will support the important work the MRCSSI is doing to help the community navigate these tough times. Our combined efforts shine a light on hope and healing for Our London Family but also the Muslim communities across Canada.”
The Honourable Kamal Khera
Minister of Diversity, Inclusion, and Persons with Disabilities
“As we watch the trial for the murders of Our London Family unfold, we remember the precious lives lost and reaffirm our commitment to combatting Islamophobia in all forms. Today’s announcement of $202,000 in funding for the Muslim Resource Centre is deeply important in supporting community members as they learn more details of this horrific act of hatred. Our London Family continues to stand united against hate in our community and across the country.”
Member of Parliament for London West
“Two years since the horrific killing of Our London Family, the London Muslim community is continuing to work through the aftermath and trauma. The Canadian Race Relations Foundation believes that culturally responsive support services are in dire need, and the MRCSSI is ideally positioned to meet that need. We’re pleased to contribute $60,000 to support them in that ongoing work.”
Executive Director of the Canadian Race Relations Foundation
“This funding is a testament to our community’s unwavering commitment to combating hatred and racism in all of its forms. The mental impact on those affected is undeniable, and yet oftentimes – overlooked. This is not only an investment in mental health and counseling, it is also an investment in resilience and healing.”
Mayor of London, Ontario
“Londoners, and the London Muslim community in particular, know all too well what the scourge of Islamophobia means. Organizations like the Muslim Resource Centre for Social Support and Integration Inc. provide a vital service in our community. We need to continue supporting them and today is an example of that.”
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Housing, Infrastructure and Communities and Member of Parliament for London North Centre
- The Victims Fund provides grants and contributions to support projects and activities that encourage the development of new approaches, promote access to justice, improve the capacity of service providers, foster the establishment of referral networks, and/or increase awareness of services available to victims of crime and their families.
- The Canadian Race Relations Foundation is a Crown corporation committed to fighting racism in Canada. Their mission is to create systemic solutions and advance public policy on anti-racism through partnership engagement, creating awareness and mobilization.
- Muslim Resource Centre for Social Support and Integration
- Canadian Race Relations Foundation
- Victims Fund
For more information, media may contact:
Laurent de Casanove
Office of the Minister of Diversity, Inclusion and Persons with Disabilities
Office of the Minister of Justice and Attorney General of Canada
Department of Justice Canada
Canadian Race Relations Foundation
Muslim Resource Centre for Social Support and Integration