Citizenship and Immigration Canada

Citizenship and Immigration Canada

March 08, 2010 15:08 ET

Minister Kenney Issues Statement Recognizing Commonwealth Day

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 8, 2010) - The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, issued the following statement recognizing Commonwealth Day:

"Every year, on the second Monday in March, Canada marks Commonwealth Day by proudly displaying the Royal Union Flag, also known as the 'Union Jack,' as a symbol of our membership in the Commonwealth. This is our opportunity to demonstrate our allegiance to The Queen, and the peaceful development of our independent democratic institutions.

"Today, from sunrise to sunset, the Royal Union Flag will be flown alongside the Maple Leaf flag. This will occur at airports, military bases, and other federal buildings and installations across Canada, wherever there is a second flagpole. The Union Jack is a proud reminder of the period in Canadian history when this country earned its nationhood and independence for our achievements in the First and Second World Wars, a time when the Prime Minister of the day deliberately chose to fly the Union Jack over Parliament.

"This year's Commonwealth Day theme is 'Science, Technology and Society.' On this day, I encourage everyone to reflect on and learn about the immense contributions of the many scientific and technological fields to the spread of progress, development, and modernity throughout the globe.

"The observance and celebration of Commonwealth Day provides the opportunity for almost one billion people around the world to reflect on their common heritage and to appreciate the contributions that the Commonwealth has made to our freedom, democracy, human rights, and the rule of law – the fundamental values that underpin Canadian society.

"It is also an opportunity for all Canadians to reflect on the tremendous contributions made to this country's rich and diverse heritage by those who trace their roots to other Commonwealth nations.

"As Prime Minister Harper has said, 'Pluralism is the principle that binds our diverse peoples together.' Pluralism has flourished here in Canada, under both the Union Jack and the Maple Leaf.

"As Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, I am pleased to join with Canadians and people around the world in celebrating Commonwealth Day."

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