‘Unacceptable and wrong’: Trudeau condemns attacks on churches

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau today condemned the wave of vandalism and arson attacks targeting Catholic churches across Canada, saying it’s not the solution to the trauma caused by residential schools.
Speaking to reporters after touring an Ottawa vaccination clinic, Trudeau said there has been a rise of intolerance and racism and hatred that we’re seeing across the country.
It is unacceptable and wrong that acts of vandalism and arson are being seen across the country, including against Catholic churches, he told reporters.
Trudeau said he understands the anger felt by many across the country since several First Nations reported finding unmarked graves at former residential school sites — but setting fire to churches is wrong.
I can’t help but think that burning down churches is actually depriving people who are in need of grieving and healing and mourning (of) places where they can actually grieve and reflect and look for support, Trudeau said.
We shouldn’t be lashing out at buildings that can provide solace to some of our fellow citizens. But we should be, every day, committing ourselves, each and every one of us, to the hard work that we need to do to actually rebuild a path forward that reflects the terrible intergenerational trauma and present day realities of suffering that we are all collectively responsible for.
Trudeau’s comments come after churches in different parts of the country of churches have been burned or spray painted with messages related to the recent discovery of hundreds of unmarked graves at former residential schools.
The federal government recently renewed funding for the Security Infrastructure Program, which works with religious institutions to upgrade security. In the 2020 Fall Economic Statement, the government announced plans to spend $13 million on the program over the next five years.
Elizabeth Thompson · CBC News