Toronto councillor to push for Filipino Heritage Month declaration

Community News & Features Nov 8, 2017 at 3:37 pm

Neethan Shan - Filipino Heritage MonthBy Ysh Cabana

TORONTO–A motion to declare June as Filipino Heritage Month annually in Toronto has been introduced in the city council the first week of November 2017.

Scarborough Rouge councillor Neethan Shan, who made the motion, said that the declaration will most likely be the first ever in Canada. The motion calls for all three levels of government to formally acknowledge the Filipino community and its history.

“Filipino-Canadians have been making tremendous amount of contribution to this country economoically, socially, politically and culturally. Not only recently but for decades,” Shan said. “This is a great way for us to show our appreciation through a motion that declares June as Filipino Heritage Month.”

The motion stated that June held a special significance for Filipino-Canadians as the Philippine Independence day is celebrated on the same month.

If passed, it will provide Torontonians, Ontarians, and Canadians an opportunity to remember, celebrate, learn about Filipino Canadians.

The move was backed by at least 55 individuals, as of writing. Camarines Norte Association Canada-Ontario president Susan Llanera said that their nearly decade-old Toronto based group fully supports the motion.

Toronto is home to more than 162,00 Filipino-Canadians, according to Statistics Canada’s 2016 Census Profile. For four years now, the Philippines remains the largest single source country of immigrants to Canada with about 600,000 across the country. 188,000 are recent immigrants.