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Anti-racism car rally held in Richmond over weekend

Event was held to support a similar one in Nanaimo, which was cancelled due to racist threats

More than 20 Richmond residents members showed up to an anti-racism car rally held on Sunday afternoon.

The rally was hosted by Richmond Multicultural Community Services (RMCS), Resilience BC and the Community Collaboration Table (CCT) to support Resilience BC’s Nanaimo branch which recently had to cancel its anti-racist car rally due to racist threats.

Richmond RCMP vehicles led 13 cars, with anti-racism stickers and banners on display, on the 25 kilometre-rally around Richmond, starting and finishing at the Caring Place on Minoru Boulevard.

Some attendees who came out said they personally experienced or know of someone who has experienced racism and wanted to support the event.

Among those who attended the event were Coun. Alexa Loo, Coun. Chak Au, Liberal MLA Teresa Wat, NDP MLAs Henry Yao, Aman Singh and Kelly Greene.

Alan Hill, inclusive communities program coordinator at RMCS, said the event was a way to tell people that racism is still happening.

“Racism is very well alive here in Richmond and everywhere else, and we want to tell people that we are here for them and we support them,” said Hill.

“We also want to make sure to educate people on how racism can affect communities and (how we can) promote inclusion in communities. People coming out to support each other is what makes a community whole.”

Hill added that while RMCS wanted to promote the event more, they were afraid of backlash.

“We wanted to support the Nanaimo branch, but was also afraid that we would receive racist threats just like them if we heavily promoted the event. However, seeing the turn-out of people really makes me happy to know there are community members who care about this issue.”

RMCS executive director, Parm Grewal, said “hate and intolerance” have no place in Richmond.

“We stand together today with our community partners in solidarity with those that are experiencing racism,” said Grewal.

“When we stand together as one, we are stronger and it is then we can offer support and tackle this endemic problem in our society.”