On August 1, 1834, the Slavery Abolition Act came into effect across the British Empire, which included Canada, freeing over 800,000 enslaved Africans and their descendants.
In 2021, the House of Commons of Canada officially designated August 1 as Emancipation Day and August as Emancipation Month to commemorate this historic moment.
This is a time to learn about Canada’s shared history, honour the strength of Black Canadians and understand the lasting impacts slavery continues to have on Black communities today. We must continue to educate ourselves and engage in the collective work to dismantle anti-Black racism and all forms of discrimination.
At Surrey Place, we reaffirm our commitment to supporting and sharing the lived experiences of self-identified Black clients, staff and caregivers accessing and providing services within the developmental services sector.
We all have a role to play in building a more just, inclusive and equitable Canada. We encourage you to explore the following resources to learn about Emancipation Month and keep this conversation going year round.
- Statement from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau (Government of Canada)
- Emancipation Day (Canada.ca)
- Confronting Anti-Black Racism (Toronto.ca)
- Emancipation Month – August 2022 (Toronto.ca)
- Emancipation Day and its relevance to Canada (Global News)
- Emancipation Day in Canada 2022 (Toronto Public Library)
- 16 books by Black Canadian authors to read in honour of Emancipation Day 2022 (CBC News)