Glimpses into Chinese Immigration in Canada The New Republic & The World Journal Vancouver Newspapers

人頭稅平反 聯邦華聯達共識

Chinese--Canada ; Reparations for historical injustices
Chinese--Canada ; Reparations for historical injustices
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Chinese--Canada;Reparations for historical injustices
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Article from: World Journal(世界日報)
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Redress of the Head Tax
Keywords: Head tax ; National Congress of Chinese Canadians ; Canadian Broadcasting Corporation ; Chinese Canadian National Council ; Tan, Ping T. ; Martin, Paul ; Chan, Raymond ; Chinese Exclusion Act ; Zhan, Wenyi ; Dai, Yima
British Columbia--Vancouver ; Ontario--Toronto
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British Columbia--Vancouver;Ontario--Toronto
人頭稅平反 聯邦華聯達共識 華聯會傳23日與聯邦簽訂協議 平權會仍爭取個人賠償及公開道歉 【本報多倫多訊】全加華人聯會昨日在記者會上宣布,有關華人人頭稅賠償事宜與聯邦政府協商進展順利,並達成共識,近期可與政府簽定協議。 據加拿大廣播公司(CBC) 報導,雙方有可能在本月23日簽定協議。平權會昨天表示此一協議並不恰當,聯邦政府仍應對人頭稅受害人及家屬提出賠償並公開道歉。 全加華人聯會(National Congress of Chinese Canadians)主席陳丙丁,在昨日上午於士嘉堡紅寶石酒樓舉行的記者會上同時宣布,將於本月25至27日在溫哥華舉行全國會議,共同協商政府1250萬撥款的使用等問題。馬田總理和多元文化部長陳卓愉被邀請出席,希望政府更加理解和了解華裔社區的意見。 陳丙丁表示,過去幾個月與政府就華人人頭稅賠償一事進行討論,現在很高興地宣布,雙方已達成共識,並可望於近期簽訂協議。將於本月底在溫哥華召開的全加華聯全國性會議,將討論如何使用政府賠償,譬如成立一個永久性的全加華人敎育基金,提供經費建立華人博物館、或文物保存室等以紀念、硏究和保存前輩爲加拿大做出的貢獻。 在回答媒體就「有華人團體指全加華聯不能代表人頭稅受害人利益」時,陳丙丁說,今天在座就有一些人頭稅繳納者後裔,他強調全加華聯「是眞正關心人頭稅繳納者、他們後代乃至全體加拿大華人的利益。」 陳丙丁指出,全加華聯首先要求馬田代表政府就歷史上針對華人的人頭稅和排華法案向華裔社區道歉。他說,全加華聯不主張對個人賠償的立場不是今天才有的,早在1991年全加華聯舉辦的全國性會議上,五百多位代表公開、民主地發表意見,就人頭稅賠償的解決辦法進行了兩天的廣泛討論, 最終形成全加華聯的立場,且這一立場至今未變。因此,陳丙丁強調,對現在華裔社區中的不同聲音、以及要求與全加華聯辯論等「不會予以理會」。 陳丙丁說,不贊成個人賠償,並不能被視爲輕視和忽略人頭稅和排華法案的直接受害者。全加華聯也有考慮如何照顧尙在世的華工,特別是希望能收錄他們講述的親身經歷以示後人。他表示,有責任敎育下一代、敎育所有加拿大人, 讓人們了解華裔前輩在建設加拿大時遭遇的不平待遇,讓歷史錯誤不再重演;更重要的是,通過敎育使華人社區更團結。 全加華聯會秘書詹文義表示,全加華聯正在努力抓住時機解決歷史遺留問題,提出的方案也是有理、有力、有節。如果堅持要求政府對個人賠償,以現在納稅人的錢解決歷史問題就會造成新的不公道。 加拿大政府在1885年通過法案,對來加的中國人每人徵收50元人頭稅,1900年加至100元,最高是1903年的500元。有報導稱,從1885年至1923年之間,政府從八萬名華人徵收此稅共獲2300萬元。1923年廢除人頭稅的同時又通過新的「排華法案」,續歧視中國移民。「排華法案」至1947年廢除。 對於人頭稅平反,目前全加華人協進會(Chinese Canadian National Council,簡稱「平權會」)等其他組織,仍爭取個人賠償及公開道歉。 【圖片】: 全加華人聯會主席陳丙丁表示,有關人頭税平反事宜,可望近期與政府簽訂協議。(戴伊瑪攝) 【圖片】: 全加華人聯會昨日舉行記者會, 宣布就人頭稅平反事宜與政府達成共識;(右三)主席陳丙丁、(右四)秘書詹文義。(戴伊瑪攝) English translation: Redress of the Head Tax Federal Government and National Congress of Chinese Canadians Have Reached a Consensus NCCC will Sign an Agreement with the Federal Government on the 23rd CCNC Still Strives for Individual Compensation and a Public Apology World Journal Toronto Report The National Congress of Chinese Canadians (NCCC) announced at a press conference yesterday that the negotiation with the federal government regarding the compensation for the Chinese head tax has progressed smoothly. A consensus has been reached, and an agreement will be signed with the government in the near future. According to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), the two sides may sign an agreement on the 23rd of this month. The Chinese Canadian National Council (CCNC) said yesterday that this agreement is not appropriate. The federal government should still offer compensation and a public apology to those who paid the head tax and their families. The chair of the NCCC, Ping T. Tan, announced yesterday morning at a press conference held at the Ruby Restaurant in Scarborough that a national conference will be held in Vancouver from the 25th to 27th this month to discuss issues, such as the use of 12.5 million in government funds. Prime Minister Martin and Minister of Multiculturalism Raymond Chan were invited to attend, in the hope that the government would understand and hear the Chinese community’s opinion more receptively. Ping T. Tan said that in the past few months, the government had discussed the issue of Chinese head tax compensation. The announcement that the two sides have reached a consensus and are expected to sign an agreement in the near future is very pleasing. The NCCC national conference, to be held in Vancouver at the end of this month, will discuss how to use government compensation. For example, establishing a permanent national Chinese Canadians education fund and providing funds for the establishment of a Chinese museum or an artifacts preservation room to commemorate, investigate and preserve the contributions that our predecessors have made to Canada. In response to the media’s [comment that] "a Chinese group pointed out that the NCCC cannot represent the interests of the head tax payers", Ping T. Tan said that there are some descendants of the head tax payers here today. He stressed that the NCCC “is truly concerned about the interests of head tax payers, their descendants and all Chinese Canadian." Ping T. Tan pointed out that the NCCC first asked Martin to apologize to the Chinese community on behalf of the government for the head tax and the Chinese Exclusion Act in history. He said that the stand that the NCCC took against individual compensation was nothing new. As early as 1991, at a national conference held by the NCCC, more than 500 representatives expressed their opinions openly and democratically. After an extensive two-day discussion on the settlement of the head tax compensation, the position of the NCCC was eventually formed, and this position has never changed. Therefore, Ping T. Tan emphasized that the different current voices in the Chinese community, as well as the request for a debate with the NCCC, “will not be taken into account". Ping T. Tan said that the disapproval of individual compensation should not be regarded as neglecting and ignoring people who are directly affected by the head tax and the Chinese Exclusion Act. The NCCC is also considering how to take care of Chinese workers who are still alive, especially since they hope to record their personal experiences to show future generations. He said that it is a responsibility to educate the next generation and all Canadians, to let people see the unfair treatment our Chinese predecessors had experienced when they were contributing to Canada so that historical mistakes will not be repeated. More importantly, we can make the Chinese community more united through educating them. Zhan Wenyi, secretary of the NCCC, said that the NCCC is making efforts to seize the opportunity to solve the problems left over by history, and the proposal is reasonable, powerful and modest. If we insist on individual compensation from the government, it will cause new injustices by solving the historical problem with current taxpayers’ money. The Canadian government enacted an act in 1885 to levy a $50 head tax for every Chinese person coming to Canada. It was increased to $100 in 1900, and at its height was $500 in 1903. It has been reported that between 1885 and 1923, the government collected a total of 23 million dollars from 80,000 Chinese. In 1923, the head tax was abolished, but the new Chinese Exclusion Act was adopted, which continued to discriminate against Chinese immigrants. The Chinese Exclusion Act was abolished in 1947. As for redressing the head tax, other organizations, such as the Chinese Canadian National Council (CCNC for short), still strive for individual compensation and a public apology. [Photo]: Ping T. Tan, chair of the NCCC, said that an agreement with the government on redressing the head tax is expected in the near future. (Photo by Dai Yima) [Photo]: The NCCC held a press conference yesterday to announce that a consensus with the government on the issue of redressing the head tax has been reached; (third from the right) chair Ping T. Tan, (fourth from right) secretary Zhan Wenyi. (Photo by Dai Yima)