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City Councillor Sponsors Motion to Declare June Filipino Heritage Month in Toronto

By Tony A. San Juan, OCT
November 8, 2017


Toronto City Councillor Neethan Shan of Ward 42 (Scarborough - Rouge River ) is reported to be introducing at Toronto City Council to formally declare the month of June, Filipino Heritage Month. N. Shan is seeking  support from the Filipino Canadian and other communities for  a motion during the next Council meeting from November 7 to 9, 2017. 

The motion  will call for a formal recognition by all three levels of government of the "many contributions that Filipino Canadians have made to our society."  As such, the motion, documented  calls on City Council to take action on the following recommendations: "As such, the motion, documented as MM34.15, calls on City Council to take action on the following recommendations: 1) Toronto City Council formally declare June as Filipino Heritage Month for the City of Toronto in 2018, and for future years. 2) Toronto City Council formally request the Province of Ontario to declare June as Filipino Heritage Month for the province in 2018, and for future years.3) Toronto City Council formally request the Government of Canada to declare June as Filipino Heritage Month for the country in 2018, and for future years."

According to Robin Nieto, executive assistant of Councillor N. Shan, to ensure the success of this initiative, individuals and organizations are being encouraged to write a letter supporting the motion. The Letters of Support have to be addressed to Toronto City Council members, and be submitted by email to the City Clerk at clerk@toronto.ca  on or before November 7, 2017 with a copy to   Councillor Shan's office at  councillor_shan@toronto.ca. F urther, for emails to be processed by the City Clerk's office, the following information must be included: in the Email Subject: "My Comments for 2017 MM34.14 on November 17, 2017 City Council".

The initiative, it is believed, is an offshoot of a solid written petition started by Paulina Corpuz, president of both the Filipino Canadian Parents Association in Catholic Education (FCPACE) and Philippine Advancement through Arts & Culture (PATAC) sometime in early spring. It gained groundswell support and encouragement in the community especially from ProFaith organizations led by TCDSB Trustee Garry Tanuan.

With high hopes and expectations, once the motion is considered this will be a historic moment for Filipinos in the Greater Toronto Area and beyond to celebrate with great pride and honour  the Filipino heritage, culture, language and contribution since the world-wide  diaspora in the 1970s. Aptly, the month of June is significantly revered because of the commemoration of 119th Philippine Independence Day on June 12. (Tony A. San Juan, OCT.).

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