City’s Use Of “East Indian” Offensive: Coughlan

By Meghann Coughlan. The infographic created by the City of Abbotsford for their Abbotsforward project, has been raising some eyebrows.

The use of the term “East Indian” is overwhelmingly Eurocentric and is often used as a blanket term for those born in India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Making matters worse, people born in India are not “East Indian”, they are Indian. No “East” needed. There is no need to create another term for people from India simply because colonisers decided to incorrectly label our First Nations population as Indians.

And what of these “Canadians” in the infographic? Who are these people? The infographic states that it is representative of ethnic origin. Are these Canadian white people who are neither English, German nor Scottish?

Should people of these ethnic origins be offended that they aren’t being considered Canadian, as well? I am sure they don’t mean First Nations people – who are truly the only people with Canadian ethnic origins dating back to time immemorial.

Abbotsforward and the City of Abbotsford: it’s 2014. I think you have some apologies to make and some sensitivity training to take.

Abbotsforward Graphic

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