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The events of the past week, starting with the United States' temporary ban on the entry of citizens from seven designated countries, to the shooting last evening at a mosque in Quebec City during evening prayers, are deeply disturbing. Our response as individuals, as an organization and as a country must be calm, measured and strong in voicing our belief that inclusion and the celebration of diversity is what we – as Canadians – believe in and require for our country.
Of the shooting in Quebec City, Premier Couillard said:
"We were hoping that because of the fact that we have such an open and peaceful society that we would be immune to the violence we see around the world but obviously this is not the case. We must continue to build a society together that is open, welcoming and peaceful.
We will do it because we have the energy to do it and the will to do it."
Prime Minister Trudeau's statement said:
"We condemn this terrorist attack on Muslims in a centre of worship and refuge. […] Muslim-Canadians are an important part of our national fabric, and these senseless acts have no place in our communities, cities and country."
Toronto is the world's most diverse city and UHN reflects that diversity in its staff, patients and their families, students and volunteers. Many people will be struggling with the news today and may well be affected by the travel ban or the attack at the mosque. We must all work together to demonstrate that despite these events we will stand strong in our beliefs that tolerance, support, peace and understanding are the best attributes of our society, and our citizens are worth standing up for at this time in our history.