Fighting against racism, bullying, hate crimes and discrimination, Sikhs across the United Kingdom and Canada observed ‘Pink Shirt Day’ on Wednesday, coming out in pink shirts and turbans to give message of kindness and tolerance. The pink shirts and T-shirts with the message ‘Kindness is One Size Fits All’ were distributed in huge numbers and Pink Shirt Day rallies held across Canada, the UK and in some other countries. The campaign has also found support from Canadian PM Justin Trudeau and National Defence Minister of Canada Harjit Sajjan, a Sikh who too sporting a pink shirt gave out a message Wednesday.
“I’m wearing pink because we should celebrate our differences, stand up for each other, and work together to end bullying and discrimination. I am wearing my pink shirt today because bullying is never okay,” said Sajjan in his message. “Our caucus is sporting its finest colours for #PinkShirtDay today – let’s stand up to bullying and lift each other up, today & every day,” (sic) said message from Canadian PM Trudeau.
Various Sikh organizations and gurudwaras across Canada and the UK requested people to “practise kindness, and wear a Pink Shirt, button, or pin to symbolise you do not tolerate bullying”. People were also requested to flash message ‘Bullying stops here’ on their T-shirts.
Jagmeet Singh, an engineer settled in Vancouver, told The Indian Express, “This Pink Shirt Day movement basically started from Nova Scotia where two school children were bullied for wearing pink shirts on day one of their school. Since then, pink shirt has become a symbol against racism, bullying and discrimination. As Sikhs too have been facing these issues and have been victims of hate crimes due to turbans and beard, we decided to observe Pink Shirt Day for cause of Sikhs too.”
The Gurudwara Sahib Sukh Sagar at New Westminster of Canada also observed the day with anti-bullying programme for the youths and requested people to wear pink. “Bullying is a major problem for students, employees and almost everyone faces it once in life. So Sikh community settled abroad is hugely supporting this campaign,” said Prithpal Sekhon from Toronto.