Relocation of Japanese-Canadians to internment camps in the interior of British Columbia.
Tak Toyota (1942)
Library and Archives Canada/C-046350
Internment camp for Japanese-Canadians, June 1945
National Film Board of Canada, Still Photography Division
Archives Canada PA-142853
Discrimination against Japanese Canadians permeates Canada’s historical record. However, one of the worst examples of racism in Canada took place during the Second World War after the bombing of Pearl Harbour on 7 December 1941. On 27 February 1942, the “evacuation” or internment of the 21,000 Japanese Canadians who lived within a hundred miles inland from the Pacific coast began. Most of the people were either born in Canada or had lived in the country for decades. Property was seized, families were separated, people were removed to remote camps, and, as the end of the war drew near, they were pressured to leave Canada for Japan or not return to the Pacific coast. In 1988, the Canadian government apologized to Japanese Canadians and began the process of compensating victims and their descendents.