FOR RACIAL JUSTICE
The formation of the Committee for Racial Justice as the fruit
of the work of the Anti Racism Task Group (2002-2004) which grew out of a response to two significant
the year 2000 – the support given at 76 Annual Meeting of Toronto
Conference to the World Council of Churches’Ecumenical Decade to Overcome Violence: Churches
and Peace 2001- 2010, and the approval by the 37th General Council, August 2000, policy statement on anti-racism, That All May Be One. At
the request of the Church in Society and
Ethnic Ministries committees, Conference Executive on November
10, 2004, approved the establishment of a new standing
Committee for Racial Justice, with the following goals and
To catalyze anti-racism education and action within Toronto
To critically examine, monitor, and communicate how racism
operates and is practiced in Toronto Conference.
To facilitate the implementation of the policy on racial
harassment and discrimination in Toronto Conference.
To petition General Council to change the Manual to include
a policy and process for addressing racial harassment and discrimination.
To support committees and groups in Toronto Conference in
their work toward anti-racist ministry through facilitating access to relevant education
materials and opportunities, resourcing policy development and anti-racism
action planning; and responding to other needs and requests to further
To facilitate communication forums for the Toronto Conference anti-racism
network in their work toward creating an anti-racist church.
To provide at least one further Conference wide transformative
education opportunity on anti-racism.
To further develop Toronto Conference’s anti-racism resource
To communicate findings and insights about how racism
functions and is practiced in Toronto Conference as part of the journey and work towards
The first meeting of the
Committee was held on October 12, 2005. Recruitment for an augmented and racially
and culturally diverse membership was completed by January 31, 2006. Since then
the Committee has endorsed and promoted throughout the Conference the pilot project
“Racial Justice Week” (March 19-26) organized by the Canadian Ecumenical
Anti-Racism Network (CEARN), putting on the Conference website several of the
anti-racism resources now available in the Conference office. The Committee is
at present (spring 2006) focusing on reviewing a possible Policy on
Racial Harassment and Discrimination, as well as planning for future educational events and programs while its
members continue to share learning and experiences at each meeting.
The Committee for Racial Justice
is committed to continuing its work so that “All May Be
One”as the Christic-centred faith community within this
society of rich racial, cultural and religious diversity as we name the violence of
racism and engage in a process of healing and reconciliation. It is helping and will help the Conference act as passionate partners and followers of Jesus
Christ and move towards building an anti-racist church by
actualizing mutual respect and valuing the gifts of difference. We pray that, through
the work of Racial Justice, each member of Toronto Conference will be a gift
for the holistic body of Christ that heals and reconciles as we stand firm on
justice through the guidance of the life-giving Spirit.
John Young-Jung Lee
Chair, Committee for Racial Justice,
Toronto Conference, The United Church of Canada