National Association of Japanese Canadians

NAJC-25th-sm

The National Association of Japanese Canadians is a non-profit incorporated community organization in Canada that represents the Japanese Canadian community. Formed in 1947, the NAJC focuses on human rights and community development.

The NAJC successfully negotiated the historic Redress Settlement on behalf of all Japanese Canadians who suffered injustices at the hands of their own government during and after World War II when they were dispossessed, forcibly relocated and interned. On September 22, 1988, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney and NAJC President Art Miki signed the redress agreement acknowledging the wrongs committed against Japanese Canadians.

NAJC Young Leaders Conference

Friday, September 19th – Sunday, September 21st, 2014
Vancouver, B.C.

The Japanese Canadians Young Leaders Conference (JCYLC) is a space for Japanese Canadian (JC) young people to remember the past, recognize the present, and reimagine the future of the JC community! By prioritizing dialogue and empowering young people through workshops, heritage tours, panels, and trans-generational discussion, the JCYLC offers a unique opportunity for young Japanese Canadians to develop, inspire, and lead nikkei communities across the country! Register today!

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President’s Report July 2014

by Ken Noma

Warmer weather has finally arrived and many of you will be taking your well-deserved vacations. If possible, please use the opportunity to re-engage with our community by attending summer festivals or visiting historic and cultural sites of significance to our heritage.

Nikkei Pride
Although it was only a few months ago, the Sochi Olympics of February seems like a distant memory.

I was surprised to learn about the growing number of Nikkei competitors who took part in the Winter Olympic and Para-Olympics. They seemed to have exploded to the attention of the main-stream media this year.   The list of Nikkei athletes below was supplied by Kevin Okabe and although it may not be complete,I wanted to bring them to your attention (I would appreciate receiving names left out at: National@najc.ca).

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NAJC Heritage Tour Hawai'i

National Association of Japanese Canadians and Safeway Holidays present:
Ken Noma’s Hawai’i Heritage Tour
March 3-12, 2015
Big Island (Kailua-Kona & Hilo), Waikiki

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New Denver: Our Spiritual Furusato

New Denver needs our immediate support!

The Kyowakai Society of New Denver originally conceived and managed the former internment camp site that was officially opened in 1994. Due to the aging membership of the Kyowakai Society and declining volunteer pool, the Village of New Denver took over the management of the site; they being the legal owners of the site. This year marks the 20th anniversary and plans are underway for celebrations to take place on Saturday, August 9th in New Denver.

In my President’s Message of June 2011, I wrote the following comments about the New Denver Internment Memorial Centre (NIMC):

“…..two busloads of Nikkei (a large number being Nisei), took part in the May 1987 first internment camp tour organized by Reverend David Murata. The miles that we travelled allowed the Nisei to step forward and tell their stories over the bus PA system. I recall remarking to my seatmate—a Nisei lady—that coming from Ontario devoid of majestic mountains, of the majesty of the Rockies and the dark beauty of the surrounding forests. She said that the beauty of the landscape only amplified the ugliness of what happened to our community. Many of the camps have disappeared but the most memorable was the former camp in New Denver.

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December Message

On Forgiveness

On the evening of October 5th, I had the personal pleasure of being a speaker on a panel titled The Practice of Forgiveness: Questions and Challenges in Pursuit of Reconciliation and Justice. The other members of the panel were Donald Sanderson – Assistant Professor, Faculty of Law (University of Toronto) who is also a member of the Cree (Opaskwayak) First Nations; Vera Schiff – Holocaust survivor and author; and Samantha Lawler- Forgiveness Project Story Contributor. The moderator was Cat Criger, Traditional Aboriginal Elder for the University of Toronto and a member of the Cayuga (Guyohkohnyoh) of the Six Nations Iroquois. The topic was part of a series of panels on the over-arching topic of forgiveness organized by the Equity office of the University of Toronto. The role of forgiveness in the healing process has not been fully explored in our community.

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November message

September was an extremely busy month, so much so that it prevented me from submitting a report for the October issue of The Bulletin. Here is a summary of some of my activities:

NAJC AGM (September 20-21)
31 delegates and alternates from 13 of 14 member organizations attended the weekend annual general meeting held in Toronto. In addition, we hosted the second concurrent Young Leaders conference. Thanks to the Kobayashi clan for their help in organizing the excellent Friday evening hospitality room. Special thanks go to all those who took time away from their busy schedule to attend and their desire to continue to make the NAJC a viable organization. The 2014 AGM will be hosted in the city of Vancouver.  Continue reading November message

With Aloha

On July 24th, 12 members of the first NAJC Hawai’i Heritage Tour began their tour of the Island of Oahu. One of the main objective was to connect with and to learn about the history and the challenges faced by our Japanese American cousins. It was timely that this year was also the 25th anniversary of the Japanese American and Japanese Canadian Redress Settlements. As I have noted in my previous articles, President Ronald Regan’s signing of the Civil Liberties Act HR 442 on August 10 1988 contributed to the Canadian redress settlement on September 22, 1988.

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Charter of Quebec Values

The National Association of Japanese Canadians (NAJC) is concerned about the proposed “Charter of Quebec Values” and in particular the measures to prohibit public servants from wearing conspicuous religious symbols.

Ken Noma, President of the NAJC stated that “We support the Quebec Government’s goal to defend equity between men and women and to encourage equity and harmonious relations among all peoples but we do not believe that the proposed ‘Charter of Quebec Values’ is the means to accomplish these goals.”

The NAJC sees this proposed Charter as a violation of human rights, which guarantees the rights to freedom of expression, freedom of religion and freedom to manifest one’s religion.  We must remain open to the diversity of cultural and religious expression if we are to remain an open and welcoming Canada.

The National Association of Japanese Canadians celebrated the 25th anniversary of the Japanese Canadian Redress Settlement on September 22nd and with the acceptance of this agreement, our community made a tacit agreement to be vigilant in our commitment to the civil and human rights for all Canadians.

Contact:
Ken Noma, President
National Association of Japanese Canadians
national@najc.ca 204.943.2910

Nishga Girl Rededication

Nishga Girl Rededication

President's Message

  • President’s Report July 2014
    President’s Report July 2014

    by Ken Noma

    Warmer weather has finally arrived and many of you will be taking your well-deserved vacations. If possible, please use the opportunity to re-engage with our community by attending summer festivals or visiting historic and cultural sites of significance to our heritage.

    Nikkei Pride Although it was only a few months ago, the [...] Read more →

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