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As we mourn the family of four Muslim-Canadians who were killed in London, Ont., on June 6, leaving behind an orphaned child, and as it appears that the motive of the alleged killer was hatred toward Muslims, questions are being asked about the extent of racism in this country. NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh went so far as to claim that “Canada is a place of racism” and that “Muslims are not safe in this country.” But is Canada really as racist as Singh claims? There is certainly no question that hate crimes against many minority groups — including Jewish, Muslim and Asian Canadians — have been on the rise recently. Statistics Canada found that police-reported hate crimes increased in 2019 from the previous year, and reports of anti-Asian hate crimes have surged throughout the pandemic. A 2019 Ipsos Reid poll found that 26 per cent of respondents believed that prejudice against Muslims had become “more acceptable” in the previous five years. This compares to 21 per cent for refugees, 23 per cent for immigrants as a whole and 15 per cent or less for other minority groups, including Indo-Canadians and Jewish-Canadians.

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