The eyes of the city are pushing to diversify the holidays – Low Calorie Diets Tips

The City of Winnipeg may soon consider how public holidays can better reflect the diverse cultural and religious practices of all residents.

The council’s executive committee will discuss a call on Wednesday to seek feedback from the community on how public holidays “could be better aligned with the principles of equity, diversity and inclusion”.

“It’s in response to feedback I’ve received from members of Winnipeg’s diverse community, many of whom have commented to me that they need to take sick days or vacation to observe religious holidays or holidays, which is important to me as a practicing Christian is not something I have to do,” said Mayor Brian Bowman.

“There are important religious holidays that are not public holidays.”

If EPC agrees, a civil service report would also be tasked with making recommendations for the council to consider. That would likely include proposals to state and federal governments setting public holidays.

The motion is recommended by the Council’s Human Rights Committee.

The mayor said he believes the report will primarily urge changes at higher levels of government, which the city can then advocate for.

“We may be able to add our voice to the conversation, using the expertise that we have in the Human Rights Committee.”

If the report suggests changes in the city of Winnipeg, Bowman said he’s open to considering those as well.

dr Rehman Abdulrehman, who has long urged all Winnipeggers to officially recognize the most important holidays of different cultures, said he proposed the idea to the Human Rights Committee.

As a clinical and consulting psychologist at Lead with Diversity, he said providing days off to recognize a wider range of public holidays would help fight racism and expand cultural understanding.

“Many people of color and many people from cultural communities who don’t belong to a Eurocentric perspective tend to be constantly viewed as alien…not local,” Abdulrehman said.

“As we begin to incorporate holidays and celebrations from different Canadian communities into our holiday calendar, it changes the dynamic of redefining who we are as a community and what ‘local’ means as a community.”

In particular, he said important days for different religions and the indigenous community deserve more attention. While the federal government has instituted a National Day for Truth and Reconciliation, Abdulrehman said National Indigenous People’s Day (June 21) should be added as a public holiday.

“While it is important that we (recognize truth and reconciliation) we also need to celebrate tribal peoples for who they are and not just (recognize) what they have lost,” he said.

Abdulrehman suggests that recognizing around eight to 10 other public holidays would be far more inclusive, citing Rosh Hashanah, Eid al Fitr, Diwali and the Lunar New Year as examples.

He thinks worries about productivity losses due to additional public holidays are exaggerated. He said research suggests workers now tend to be overworked, so the extra free time could actually make people more rested and increase productivity.

In an email, a provincial spokesman said the province currently has no plans to change public holidays but is “always open to working with our civil society partners.”

Twitter: @joyanne_pursaga

Joyanne Pursaga

Joyanne Pursaga

Born and raised in Winnipeg, Joyanne loves telling the stories of this city, especially when it comes to politics. Joyanne became a town hall reporter for the Winnipeg Free Press in early 2020.

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