For Immediate Release
27 June, 2023
NDP Leader and MHA Jim Dinn (St. John’s Centre) has called on the Minister of Justice and Public Safety to intervene and dispel rumours circulating after a Black man was killed and an RNC officer was wounded after an incident on Elizabeth Avenue in St. John’s on 12 June, 2023. Dinn says the choice to withhold information and not confirm the name of the deceased to the community is a failure to ensure that Sudanese, Muslim, Black and other racialized people in this province feel safe.
“We offer our sincere condolences after an individual living in our community is no longer with us, and our hearts go out to the people across our community grieving the loss of someone who at this point has yet to be confirmed dead while the community pieces together rumours that are circulating unchecked,” said Dinn. “We have reached out to the Sudanese and Muslim communities and have spoken with the Black, and other racialized people and the communities since the incident, and we agree that it is unacceptable to be weeks later and the community does not know if their neighbour is missing, or if they were killed in the incident on 12 June, 2023.”
In a letter sent to the Minister of Justice and Public Safety on 27 June, 2023, Dinn called on the Government to intervene and ensure information is provided to racialized communities in the province about the incident without delay so that they may grieve, and carry out funerary rights as expressed by the deceased’s beliefs.
“I as a white person born and raised in this province will not ever be able to fully understand the feeling of being unsafe, and underserved that is felt and expressed by racialized people in our city, province, and country,” said Dinn. “It’s of the utmost importance that we take pause and understand the fear and anxiety incidents like this cause for racialized people in our province. Now is not the time to delay their closure, their grieving, or behave as though they are not due respect and transparency in the aftermath of an incident like the one that happened on 12 June, 2023”
A copy of the letter submitted to the Minister is attached.
For further information, contact Eddy St. Coeur, Director of Communications, NDP Caucus at 729-2137 (o), or firstname.lastname@example.org