Race Relations Commissioner Joris de Bres congratulated participants at a cultural diversity day in Palmerston North last month on ‘continuing to challenge yourselves’ through Social Justice Week.
The day brought together some 80 people from a variety of cultures to celebrate cultural diversity, the theme of Social Justice Week which starts today.
Joris de Bres said incidents of racial intolerance over the past year had prompted many unprecedented acts of solidarity.
He said that at its root, recognising cultural diversity was about the safety of those who were different.
‘All of us from different ethnic and religious groups should feel safe. We’re not in the game of telling everyone they should be the same, but respond by affirming people’s right to be themselves.’
The Diocesan Centre in Palmerston North saw a number of performances throughout the day including a poetry reading by Srikanta Chatterjee and an Indian dance from the Bengali community, an action song from the Cook Islands community, two dances from the Filipino community, and a dance and display of cultural items from the Tongan community.
The day concluded with a session on bringing of the day together facilitated by Mary Nash and Paul Green, members of the Palmerston North Diocesan Commission for Justice and Peace.
There are more pictures from this event on page 12.