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Investing in Combating Hate Crimes: Prioritizing Canada’s Most Populous Province

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Ontario has announced an investment of C$25.5 million ($18.65 million) to address rising hate crimes against ethnic and religious minorities in the country’s most populous province.

The Security and Prevention Against Hate Grant will help religious and cultural organizations promote or implement measures to ensure community spaces remain safe and secure, the government said in a statement.

“No Ontario should live in fear of being targeted because of their background, who they love, or how they worship,” said Michael Ford, Minister of Citizenship and Multiculturalism.

“Building on our other anti-hate investments, the new Security and Hate Prevention Grant will help build stronger, safer, more inclusive societies and ensure a safe environment for all to practice their faith and express their culture and beliefs,” he said. .

The grant will provide up to $10,000 to help religious groups, indigenous communities and cultural communities protect and secure their facilities from hate incidents, graffiti, vandalism or other damage, the statement said.

The grant can be used to build upgrades, strengthen locks, install cameras, train staff, complete security assessments, introduce safer cybersecurity measures, hire professional security personnel for short-term, and repairs. The country’s mosques and cultural centers were on alert after a series of attacks targeting their communities.

Ontario has committed $40 million through the Ontario Grant to Support Anti-Hate Security Measures for Religious and Cultural Organizations since 2021.

In a statement, the National Council of Canadian Muslims welcomed the government’s announcement, saying, “The $25.5 million funding increase is a necessary step toward helping the large number of cultural and religious organizations across the province strengthen the security of their facilities against potentially abominable perpetrators and crimes.”

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