Sikh Community Remembers Jim Prentice

Edmonton (October 14, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada expresses sincere condolences on the passing of former Alberta premier, Jim Prentice.

WSO Vice President for Alberta Tejinder Singh Sidhu said today, "Jim Prentice was a devoted public servant and was dedicated to the service of Alberta and all of Canada.  Alberta's Sikhs will fondly remember the instrumental role he played in helping establish the Dashmesh Culture Centre gurdwara here in Calgary.  Jim took time away from his personal life to ensure that the growing Sikh community had a place to gather and worship and provided his services without any cost.  He will be sorely missed.  Our prayers are with the Prentice family at this difficult time and with the families of the others that lost their lives in last night's crash."

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WSO Concerned by Racist Graffiti Found at Fatal Alberta Motel Fire

Edmonton (October 13, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization expresses its grave concern after reports that a fatal fire at an Alberta motel may be connected to racist graffiti found at the scene.

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WSO Helps Resolve Edmonton High School Kirpan Issue

Edmonton (October 6, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada has helped Sahib Singh Bains return to high school in Edmonton after he was told his kirpan was a weapon and would not be permitted in class.

Sahib Singh, 16, is an initiated or amritdhari Sikh and wears the Sikh articles of faith including the kirpan. Last week, a teacher noticed a bulge underneath Sahib Singh's shirt.  When confronted, he confirmed that he wears a kirpan.  Sahib Singh was later approached by his school's principal who told him that the kirpan is a restricted weapon and he would have to turn the kirpan over to him immediately.

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WSO Calls for Immediate Release of Kashmiri Activist

Ottawa (September 20, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada expresses its concern at the detention of Kashmiri human rights activist Khurram Parvez.  Parvez was arrested one day before he was scheduled to travel to the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva.  (Geneva)  where he was to raise concerns about Indian security forces' human rights violations in Jammu and Kashmir.  On Tuesday, a local court in Srinagar set aside his detention order and issued directions for his immediate release, however, police have refused to free him.

The WSO calls on Indian authorities to follow the rule of law and immediately release Parvez.

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WSO Condemns Racist Posters at University of Alberta Targeting Sikhs

Edmonton (September 19, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada condemns racist posters distributed by the group “Immigration Watch Canada” targeting Sikhs at the University of Alberta. 

The poster titled “FU*K YOUR TURBAN” features a picture of a turbaned Sikh man and states, "If you're so obsessed with your third-world culture, go the fu*k back to where you came from!"

Approximately a dozen posters appeared earlier today on the University of Alberta campus but have now been taken down by campus security.

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Second Annual Sikh Youth Leadership Institute Held in Ottawa

Ottawa (August 17, 2016): The World Sikh Organization of Canada held its second annual  Sikh Youth Leadership Institute (SYLI) in Ottawa this past weekend. After taking part in a rigorous application process, twenty Sikh youths between the ages of 18-25 were selected to take part in the program. The attendees came from coast to coast, including Newfoundland, Quebec, Ontario, Alberta, Manitoba, and British Columbia. Two-thirds of this year's participants were Sikh women. 

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WSO Statement on Sentencing of Perpetrator of Quebec City Sikh Attack

Ottawa (June 30, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada calls the sentencing of Gabriel Royer Tremblay a strong message that hateful and racist attacks will not be tolerated.

Royer Tremblay was sentenced to ten months in prison for his attack on Supninder Singh Khera  in Quebec City over the Easter weekend earlier this year.  Khera, who was visiting from Toronto, was the victim of an unprovoked attack after being taunted for wearing his turban.

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WSO Statement on Passing of Lt. Col. Pritam Singh Jauhal

Surrey (June 28, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada offers its tributes to Lt. Col. Pritam Singh Jauhal who passed away on Sunday at the age of 95.  Lt. Col Jauhal led the struggle to wear turbans in Royal Canadian Legion halls in the early 1990s. 

In 1993 Lt. Col Jauhal, a World War II veteran and other Sikhs were barred from entering the Royal Canadian Legion in Surrey because of their turbans after the annual Remembrance Day parade.  The WSO had supported Lt. Col. Jauhal in his attempts to have the Legion permit the wearing of the turban.  The national organization eventually changed its policy after a national debate.

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WSO Deeply Disappointed by Defeat of Ontario Sikh Genocide Motion

Toronto (June 2, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada is deeply disappointed by the Ontario Liberal Government's vote against a motion recognizing the November 1984 attacks on Sikhs as a genocide.

NDP Deputy-Leader Jagmeet Singh had introduced a Private Members' Motion reading, "That, in the opinion of this House, the Government of Ontario should recognize the November 1984 state organized violence perpetrated against the Sikhs throughout India as a genocide."

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WSO Welcomes Komagata Maru Apology- Calls for Inclusion in School Curricula

Ottawa (May 18, 2016):  The World Sikh Organization of Canada welcomes today's apology by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on behalf of the Government of Canada for the Canadian Government's decision in 1914 to refuse entry to the Komagata Maru.  The ship, carrying 376 mostly Sikh passengers from Punjab, British India was turned away after two months of being refused entry at the Vancouver ports.  The WSO has reached out to provincial minsters of education across Canada, calling for the Komagata Maru tragedy and the racist immigration policy behind the incident to be made part of school curricula. 

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