Bill 228 - PASSED !


For the first time in Manitoba’s History, Sikh Heritage Month was celebrated in Winnipeg during the month of April in 2019.


It was launched by Sikh Heritage Manitoba on April 1 at the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba with a Chardi Kalla Ardaas, a prayer for optimism, joy, and high spirits. Honourable Cathy Cox, Minister of Sport, Culture and Heritage, proclaimed April 2019 as ‘Sikh Heritage Month’ in Manitoba following the Chardi Kalla Ardaas. We are grateful to Minister Cathy Cox and other legislators who took their time to support us on this historic day.


In April, programs and events exploring educational, artistic and cultural heritage of SIkhs were organized to highlight the triumphs and challenges of our pioneers to inspire Manitobans. The events also focused on key pillars of Sikh values such as community, resilience and chardi kalla.

 

While the events hosted during the month of April were of great significance, it was also important to get recognition for contributions of Sikhs in Manitoba. Hence, Bill-228: The Sikh Heritage Month Act, stating that April would be declared as Sikh Heritage Month in the Province of Manitoba, and was introduced by Mr. Wab Kinew on March 20, 2019. With the overwhelming support from the community and lobbying efforts of Sikh Heritage Manitoba, Bill-228 received Royal Assent on June 3, 2019.


Of course, none of this could have been done without the help of all those involved, including volunteers who spent countless hours collecting signatures from the community and contacting the legislators. This collaboration among youths and politicians alike is useful not only for aspiring politicians but also for young leaders who hope to enact change by learning to engage in the political process.


This Bill is not only significant to the Sikh community in Manitoba but important for all Canadians alike. Living in a multifaceted country, such as Canada, the importance of representation goes beyond just one community. We, at Sikh Heritage Manitoba, are proud and grateful of the unified, non-partisan support from the legislators for Bill 228.