London, Ont. teen petitions feds to create National Day Against Islamophobia
In the wake of the killing of a Muslim family by an alleged terrorist, a London, Ont. high school student is calling on the federal government to create a National Day Against Islamophobia on June 6.
Sir Frederick Banting Secondary School student Lillian Hartley, 17, has authored an online petition that has generated over 14,000 signatures from across Canada so far.
It was on June 6 when four members of the Afzaal family were struck by a pickup truck on Hyde Park Road while out for a walk.
Nathaniel Veltman, 20, was arrested and charged with four-counts of first-degree murder and one count of attempted murder. Police have said that they believe Veltman did not know the family, but targeted them with his vehicle because of their Muslim faith.
On Monday, prosecutors announced they were going ahead with terrorism proceedings after receiving consent from the country's attorney general.
"We do not currently have a day to celebrate the contributions of our Canadian Muslim community, think of those who are affected by Islamophobia and hate crimes against Muslims, or to remember those who lost their lives and loved ones during the June 6th atrocity," says Hartley.
"This is why I believe that June 6th should serve as both a day to remember, as well as a day to celebrate and learn about Canadian Muslim contributions and culture. By having a day to remember, learn about, and celebrate our Canadian Islamic community members, we display our support to their community and express our desire to eradicate anti-Islamic hate crimes from our country," she adds.