Annually on March 25th, the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade challenges us to remember those who suffered and died at the hands of the brutal slavery system and raise awareness about the dangers of racism and prejudice today.
For more than 400 years, more than 15 million men, women and children were the victims of the tragic transatlantic slave trade, one of the darkest chapters in human history. The transatlantic slave trade was the largest forced migration in history, and undeniably one of the most inhumane.
Behind the facts and figures are millions of human stories. The stories of those who were ripped from their homelands and families. The stories of those who fought against their oppressors. The stories of those who triumphed against all odds to win their freedom. Those stories continue today as people across the globe keep struggling together against the transatlantic slave trade’s most enduring legacy – racism.
When Canadians talk about slavery, we often point with pride to the role our country played in the mid‐1800s as a haven for Americans escaping captivity via the Underground Railroad. This, however, is only half the story. Like the United States, this land has its own history of slavery – and it is a history we should never forget.