Minister Kenney issues statement to celebrate Portugal Day


Ottawa, June 10, 2013 — The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, issued the following statement to mark Portugal Day:

As Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, I am pleased to extend my best wishes to all Canadians of Portuguese heritage on the occasion of Portugal Day and Portugal Week, which are being marked and across the country by parades, folk dances, sporting events, and other community gatherings.

Portugal Day gives us the opportunity to celebrate Portuguese cultural and historical heritage, which reflects the success of Canada’s pluralism. This year is particularly special, as we celebrate 60 years of large-scale Portuguese immigration to Canada.

Canada is proud to have a strong and well-integrated Portuguese community that has established itself across the country, particularly in the Greater Toronto Area and Montreal. The ‘Little Portugal’ areas in these cities are vibrant centres of economic activity and cultural life.

We should also remember that the Portuguese connection to Canada goes back to the very discovery of our country. Indeed, Portuguese explorers were among the first to visit the coast of Canada, having discovered and given the name to the land that became Labrador at the turn of the 16th century.

On behalf of Prime Minister Stephen Harper and the Government of Canada, we are grateful for your contributions to building our great country. I call on all Canadians to join with me in reflecting on the many contributions the Portuguese community has made to Canada in all areas of endeavour.

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