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For the last two weeks, public reaction to the shocking and unacceptable death of George Floyd in Minneapolis has been one of anger. What is now branded a murder has prompted an outcry not only in the United States but everywhere, around the planet, including here in the Montreal area. Sadly, George Floyd’s death under inhumane circumstances is far from unique. It is merely the latest case of abuse stemming from discrimination, from systemic racism. History has many examples of this, too many examples.

It goes without saying that Town Council – and, indeed, the entire organisation – has zero tolerance for any act of discrimination, especially ones motivated by racism. On the contrary, we celebrate every advance in civil liberties and every gain made by marginalized and unfairly treated populations. Healthy diversity is a good thing, not a threat. Equality shines bright among our many ideals.

Former U.S. president Barack Obama has spoken words full of hope in recent days and held up an inspiring light in the middle of raging debate. Against a backdrop of sometimes violent demonstrations, he urged cooperation and a conversation involving all stakeholders. I fully support these views. Today more than ever, unifying leadership is required to successfully carry out such a societal project. Some will say it’s the way of the future. I’d say it’s the way of the present.

Here in Mount Royal, we are fortunate to have seen our municipality evolve and welcome a vibrant diversity of residents over the decades. Our community of Townies comprises groups of every origin. English, Lebanese, Vietnamese, French, Jewish, Chinese and so many others. Town of Mount Royal is a fine example of what cohabitation can be. What’s more, the make-up of Town Council nicely reflects this diversity, something I’m quite proud of.

But because abuse happens and because it’s important never to let our guard down, I want to reiterate that in Town of Mount Royal discrimination in any form, racial or otherwise, is simply not accepted. I encourage you to take advantage of the current situation to talk about the issue with your family members, friends and neighbours.

Philippe Roy

Mayor

90 Roosevelt Avenue

Mont-Royal H3R 1Z5