"if you are neutral in situations of injustice, you have chosen
the side of the oppressor." - Desmond Tutu.

Spice Radio to honour campaigner against anti-Asian racism and an activist behind Black Shirt Day Featured

 

Tammy Hu and Kamika Williams are going to receive this year's annual awards from the Burnaby-based Spice Radio station as part of its campaign Hands Against Racism.  

Started by Spice Radio CEO Shushma Datt in January, 2015, the campaign has entered its seventh year and coincides with Holi, the Indian festival of colours and the international day for the elimination of racial discrimination which falls this Sunday. 

Participants are encouraged to dip their hands in colour and leave a palm print on a white sheet of paper alongside a message against racism and intolerance. 

The virtual event scheduled for March 27 will see Hu and Williams  presented with the awards for their tireless work against bigotry. 

Hu had spearheaded a fight against offensive news headlines describing COVID 19 as a "China virus". Ever since the pandemic broke out in China, hate crimes against people of Asian heritage have increased in Metro Vancouver. Hu believes that irresponsible news reporting has contributed to such madness. Spice Radio wanted to send a strong message to those involved in anti- Asian racism by honouring Hu. The announcement came at a time when at least six Asian women were murdered in Georgia, US. A suspect has been arrested following a series of shootings targeting three spas in and around Atlanta. 

Williams is being honoured for her efforts behind Black Shirt Day campaign. The day was recognized to honour the giant leader of the civil rights movement Martin Luther King Jr. 

King, who laid down his life fighting for the rights of African Americans, was born on January 15, 1929. Williams had started a petition asking for January 15 to be declared as Black Shirt Day in schools to raise awareness among youth about systemic racism against Black people. 

Both Hu and Williams had participated in Hands Against Racism this year. They have now joined the list of trailblazers and strong voices for change who have been honoured by Spice Radio in the past. 

The very first recipient of the Hands Against Racism award was Baltej Singh Dhillon. He was the first turbaned Sikh RCMP officer, who had to face a racist backlash from both within and outside the force. 

The second annual award went to Sunera Thobani, a Muslim academic who had to face hostility for questioning US foreign policies following 9/11 terror attacks. This was done to challenge growing Islamophobia under Donald Trump. 

The following year in 2018, Georgia Straight Editor Charlie Smith and anti-racism educator Alan Dutton were honoured for standing up for minorities and to amplify the stories of white allies in an ongoing struggle against intolerance. Dutton has been receiving serious threats from white supremacists. 

In 2019, indigenous activist Cecilia Point and South Asian activist Niki Sharma, who is now a member of the BC Legislature, were presented the awards for breaking many barriers and facing racism and sexism. Point has been in the forefront of the annual marches in memory of the missing and murdered indigenous women, whereas Sharma, who has been present in many rallies in support of refugees, had to face blatant racism while running for office in the city of Vancouver.  

In 2020, a police officer-turned activist Kal Dosanjh, and author and social justice activist Harsha Walia were honoured. Dosanjh is running a group called Kidsplay Foundation that educates youngsters to stay away from racism, while Walia is a die-hard grassroots level activist who has published two books. 

 

 

 

 

 

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Last modified on Friday, 19 March 2021 00:32
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