Honoured to win award

By Flor Marcelino, MLA for Logan

As published in The Times August 8, 2017

I’ve watched with pride as thousands of Manitobans responded to the global refugee crisis by stepping up to help newcomers settle and become a part of our community.

The strength of our province’s diversity continues to grow as we work hard together to support new families immigrating to Manitoba.

My husband Orli and I immigrated to Canada in 1982. I know how much of a struggle it can be to start a life in a new place. It hasn’t always been easy for my family in our journey to become Filipino Canadians but it has always been worthwhile. In this country, we can stand up for our rights and our beliefs without being persecuted; in this province, there is more of an even playing field in terms of education and opportunity; in this city, we have access to good jobs that help provide for our families.

Earlier this summer I was humbled and honoured to learn that I was chosen as one of RBC’s Top 25 Canadian Immigrants of 2017, in acknowledgment of the success I have built in my 35 years in Manitoba. For me, success is defined by overcoming hardships and failures, building strong friendships along the way, and devoting one’s self to the service of others.

But this award really isn’t about me. It’s about the countless migrants in Canada who are facing the pressures and insecurity that come with moving to a new place. It’s about the tough transitions and barriers that Indigenous people make when relocating from one community to another, even if it’s within the same country or province. It’s about the refugees who are overcoming insurmountable odds to find a safe place for their families. It’s about all of the newcomers — immigrants, refugees, and Indigenous people — who are successfully helping to drive our economy, contributing to our society, and making it a better community for all. To all of them, I dedicate this award. I want all newcomers to know that there are communities across Manitoba that are welcoming and supportive.

As interim leader for the Manitoba New Democrats, I will continue to work hard to make our province a welcoming and equitable society for all. I am passionate about supporting programs that help build our communities and I will work tirelessly to oppose any changes that block this progress.

I’m always happy to hear from fellow Manitobans and my neighbors in Logan. You can contact me at (204) 788-0800 or email me at Flor.Marcelino@yourmanitoba.ca