Hutterite colony plans to file human rights complaint against Manitoba government

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WINNIPEG – A representative from a Hutterite colony in Manitoba said Hutterites faced discrimination following recent reports of COVID-19 cases in the settlements and said they were considering filing a complaint with the Human Rights Commission. Paul Waldner of the Hutterite colony of CanAm submitted the letter to Prime Minister Brian Pallister and Health Minister Cameron Friesen on Wednesday, asking the province to stop identifying the religious affiliation of people who have tested positive for COVID -19, “including membership or residence in a Hutterite Colony. ”

“In recent days, the colony, along with other Hutterite settlements located throughout the province of Manitoba, have watched with growing concern as the province of Manitoba has publicly identified various Hutterite settlements as the places of residence of those who have tested positive for COVID-19, ”writes Waldner. “As a result of these public announcements, Hutterite communities have already started to experience the stigmatization of others in the surrounding communities.

“If the announcements continue, we expect the stigma and associated cultural and religious profiling will only worsen.”

In recent days, the province has announced several cases of COVID-19 in Hutterite settlements. The province said on Wednesday that seven of the eight reported cases involved Hutterite settlements.

Waldner asks the province to identify the geographic location where the case is located, rather than the colony present in the location.

Waldner said if the province does not stop the practice, it will file a complaint with the Human Rights Commission.

Manitoba has reported a total of 374 COVID-19 cases since March 12.

The letter can be read below.

This is a developing story. More soon.

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