Social media has proven itself to be the greatest bastion of free speech on the Internet. Governments have usually refrained to interfere in this domain and until now the arena is marked with a great sense of openness. People express their political and social views publicly and in a rather frank manner. But this fondness for freedom of expression has lead to emergence of a disturbing trend over the years as the line between freedom of speech and hate speech has become blurred.
Combatting Hate Groups: Guidelines for Community Action
This manual is a condensed and revised version of Organizing Rules: A Strategic Guide for Combatting Hate Groups, previously published by the Canadian Anti-racism Education and Research Society. Those interested in more detailed information and analysis of strategies for effective community action should consult Organizing Rules as well as the resources and organizations listed in the appendices of this manual. We would like to thank Dick Chamney, Jessica Black, Warren Kinsella, Joyce McArthur, Julien Sher for allowing us to use portions of their work previously published in Organizing Rules.
We are indebted to a large number of people and groups for their help and support in preparing the present manual. In particular, we would like to thank the advisory group: Ron Bourgeault, Wilma Clark, Trudy Dirk, Sandy Dore, Dr. Chiara Ensalmo, Gavin Hainsworth, Laurie Hearty, Helmut-Harry Loewen and Rick McKenna. We are indebted to Don Crane of Rush, Crane, Guenther and Adams for legal advice. We also want to thank the community leaders and teachers and students who participated in focus group meetings to discuss and help refine the manual. Not least, we want to acknowledge the friendly advice and tireless work of Zeineen Panjou and Zebeen Panjou in coordinating the project.
The principal researchers, writers and editors, Dale Cornish and Alan Dutton would like to acknowledge their debt to the aboriginal elders and leaders with whom they have worked over many years. In particular, they would like to thank Ernie Crey, Ron George,Viola Thomas and Rosalie Tiza for their wisdon, guidance and support.
The present manual was made possible by a generous grant from the Community Liaison Branch of the Ministry of the Attorney General province of British Columbia. We would like to gratefully acknowledge the advice and support of Mary Clare Zak and Patsy George of the Ministry of the Attorney General of British Columbia.
The information and analysis presented in the following pages does not necessarily represent the views of the government of the province of British Columbia nor is it meant as legal advice. A competent lawyer should be consulted for legal advice. Competent community groups should be consulted on practical issues of organizing and security. Any errors or omissions are entirely the responsibility of the authors.
The Canadian Anti-racism Education and Research Society (CAERS) is a non profit Society founded in 1984 to provide:
- action-oriented research on racism, hate group activity and hate crime;
- support for the survivors and targets of racism and hate crime;
- workshops on the impact of racism, hate propaganda and hate crime;
- educational resources on anti-racism, multiculturalism and equity;
- support for anti-racism information, action networks and victim support committees;
- support and education for policy development at various levels of government on anti-racism and equity issues;
- leadership training in anti-racism, equity issues, community development and institutional change;
- support for action-oriented research and statistical analysis of trends.
Since 1984 the Society has expanded its work to include research on hate on the Net and has become a clearing house for research on the extreme right in Canada.
The Society provides workshops on anti-racism research on-line and works in coalition with groups to help them develop their own action-oriented research.
In 1998, the Society won a prestigious anti-racism award from the Attorney General of the province of British Columbia in recognition of action-oriented research on racist groups. The Society has addressed the Canadian Association of Chiefs of Police, conducted training for the Department of Corrections Canada, the Association of Correctional Workers, the Ministry of Education and a wide variety of non-governmental agencies.The accomplishments of the Society are presented at www//anti-racism.com.
Victims of racism and hate crime are encouraged to report incidents to the Society online at www.stopracism.ca. Mail can be sent to CAERS at POB 324-280 Nelson Street, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada V6B 2E2. E-mail can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org. Victims of racism and hate crime are also encouraged to contact a local law enforcement agency in case of emergency or to make a complaint. Complaints can also be made online.
Canadian Human Rights Section 13 Complaints
Former Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper, rescinded s. 13(1) of the Canadian Human Rights Act in 2013. S. 13(1) was one of the most important pieces of legislation to prevent hate groups from using the internet to promote racism and hate and recruit young people into hate groups. Stephen Harper, in his early career as a right-wing politicians, was a member of the Norther Foundation.