Let’s end racism in Red Deer.



the active process of identifying and eliminating racism by changing systems, organizational structures, policies and practices and attitudes, so that power is redistributed and shared equitably.

Author Ibram X. Kendi says, “The opposite of racist is not non-racist, but anti-racist.” Kendi compares racism to cancer — it won’t go away if we just ignore it. We have to get active and fight it.

Red Deer is generally a welcoming place where we celebrate difference as a strength. But too often, people are mistreated because of their race — whether they’re in public spaces, at work or online.

It’s up to all of us to learn and perform the work of antiracism. Not only is it the right thing to do, it helps to create communities that are more prosperous, safe and just for everyone.

Ayaa and Samantha, two proud Red Deer neighbouts from different backgrounds.

The numbers

“I feel that racism is worse in Red Deer than elsewhere.”


“I have experienced racism first-hand.”


“I have rarely or never been helped when I did experience racism.”


We asked people in Red Deer…

What would enable you to speak out against racism?


  1. Learning how to take action
  2. Feeling more confident
  3. Feeling supported by others

What would help most to reduce racism?


  1. More people intervening in racist situations
  2. Better cultural training and protocols for police
  3. Supportive policies and practices in the workplace

Debunking myths

Canada accepts too many immigrants.

With Canada’s birth rate declining, immigration is a vital driver of economic growth.

Immigrants burden the economy.

Most immigrants are skilled workers, and up to 90% of Canada’s economic growth is due to the contributions of newcomers.

Refugees make no meaningful contributions.

On average, refugees work more years than native-born Canadians. Refugees also pay more in taxes.

Immigrants bring crime and pose a security risk.

Immigrants have lower overall crime rates than the Canadian-born population.

Proud to be your neighbour

Red Deer is home to people from incredibly diverse backgrounds, whether Indigenous, settled, or new to Canada.

We all have the capacity to make important contributions to our communities, and to make positive connections with one another.

Here are a few stories that show how these connections make Red Deer a better place.

Sister Mary & Mayor Ken

Ayaa and Samantha, two proud Red Deer neighbouts from different backgrounds.

Sister Mary

How did you come to Red Deer?

I was born in Onitsha, Anambra State in Nigeria. I studied Philosophy and Theology at John Lateran University Rome, before being sent to Canada from Italy on a missionary trip to St. Paul’s Catholic Diocese in Alberta. I moved to Red Deer for further studies and missions in September of 2012.

What do you do in life?

I am a Catholic Religious Missionary (Nun) with St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Red Deer, as well as a social worker. I work with Central Alberta Immigrant Women Association (CAIWA) and Catholic Social Services (CSS) in Red Deer, providing opportunities for growth and self empowerment to immigrants, families and the less privileged people in our community. 

Tell us about your neighbour Mayor Ken.

I first met Ken when he visited CAIWA. In my experience, he is down to earth, honest and respectful. He listens non-judgmentally and approaches issues collaboratively, following through to help us achieve desirable outcomes.

Mayor Ken

How did you come to Red Deer?

I was born and raised in Newfoundland, joining Scotiabank in 1973. In 1980, I was transferred to Alberta and worked in various positions across the province. We moved to Red Deer in 1996 and have remained here since. I retired from banking in July of 2013 and was elected to Red Deer City Council in October of that year.


What do you do in life?

I am currently serving as Mayor of Red Deer. 

Tell us about your neighbour Sister Mary.

I met Sister Mary on a visit to CAIWA. I was struck by her sincerity and humbled that she would seek out my assistance with an issue she had. In subsequent meetings with her I was delighted to be able to help her and to get to know her more. I value her honesty, her integrity and most of all her care. She has become a true friend and one I can rely on to give me advice and truth. I am truly blessed to have her in my life.

Martha and Monica

Ayaa and Samantha, two proud Red Deer neighbouts from different backgrounds.


How did you come to Red Deer?

I am originally from Colombia, a beautiful South American country. Although it’s a marvelous place with an amazing variety of people, climates and foods, I had to leave my country because I suffered a traumatic and life-threatening personal situation.

What do you do in life?

I am a Support Community Worker as well as an acting Social Worker. I’ve been gaining a ton of community resource knowledge. I love to help others in any possible way. I feel a big reward when I am able to lend a hand. 

Tell us about your neighbour Monica.

I met Monica when she interviewed me for a position at Golden Circle, a senior resource centre in Red Deer. She was very welcoming and offered me a big smile which made me feel comfortable and accepted. 

She is always there for me, no matter the situation, time, location, or anything. Furthermore, she gets involved with my family as well as letting me be part of hers; they treat me as one of their own.


How did you come to Red Deer?

I was born in London, Ontario to immigrants from Germany. I am a first-generation Canadian.  I came to Red Deer to be closer to my first born grandchild and was able to continue my career in senior services.  


What do you do in life?

I am the Executive Director of the Golden Circle Senior Resource Centre.

Tell us about your neighbour Martha.

Martha is full of life. She makes me smile and she is always wanting to be helpful. I love her confidence that she shows whenever she walks into a room.  She is intelligent and is always dressed to the nines. I find Martha a very warm person and I love to get hugs from her because they are genuine.  All I can say is that she has a beautiful spirit.

Ayaa & Samantha

Ayaa and Samantha, two proud Red Deer neighbouts from different backgrounds.


How did you come to Red Deer?

I’m originally from Uganda in east Africa and moved to Red Deer just a few months ago, in the winter. I’d never seen so much snow in my life, and had to get used to the sun going down in mid-afternoon. There were so many differences that took lots of getting used to. 

What do you do in life?

My job is in community and social support, working to help vulnerable people in Red Deer.

Tell us about your neighbour Samantha.

Well, I have met many friendly and positive people since I came, from my colleagues at work, to my new neighbours in Red Deer.

One of the first neighbours to invite me over to her home for a chat was Samantha, an Indigeous mum of one beautiful son. She made me feel a sense of community right away, and I knew she and I would watch out for each other. 

Other neighbours have helped by receiving my packages while I waited for my mailbox key to be sent to me, and have given me insight into Red Deer about where I could find things, and have even offered to pick up items I couldn’t find.


How did you come to Red Deer?

I was born in Wetaskiwin and raised in Red Deer. When I was younger, I was in the foster care system, and struggled to find purpose in my life. Now I’m proud to be part of our amazing Indigenous community here in Red Deer!


What do you do in life?

I work at a local non-profit group as the Elder helper. I am very involved in the community and help out wherever I can.

Tell us about your neighbour Ayaa.

My neighbour Ayaa moved here recently from Uganda, and she is amazing. She lives just above me and we share stories about our cultures while providing a lot of support for one another. We connected right away after she moved in. It’s always good to have someone close by who you can rely on.

Lea and Amanda

Ayaa and Samantha, two proud Red Deer neighbouts from different backgrounds.


How did you come to Red Deer?

I was born in Cameroon, and my husband and I came to Canada in 2012 searching for a better career. We lived in Montreal for six years because our first language is French.  My husband came to Alberta in 2017 and fell in love with the beautiful landscapes. After visiting Calgary and Edmonton we chose Red Deer for its lovely parks, no traffic and the friendly people.

What do you do in life?

I’m a Fashion Designer and Health Care Aide, so I work in home care and have my small business here in Red Deer.

Tell us about your neighbour Amanda.

I met Amanda through a friend who put us in touch because we were both designers. Amanda gave me such a warm welcome, and we shared our experiences with so much humor and joy. Amanda is very friendly, and has a lot of empathy and is always ready to help. We share the struggle of being a wife, a mother and an entrepreneur.


How did you come to Red Deer?

I was born in Lethbridge and raised in Red Deer from the age of eight until the end of high school. I grew up in Red Deer’s “Lower Fairview”, or now better known by its more upscale reference as “East Side Meadows”. Growing up in somewhat of a lower income family unit of two children and one working parent I quickly learned the value of acceptance, inclusion and community.


What do you do in life?

I am a mother and wife, entrepreneur, fashion designer, beauty consultant and community volunteer

Tell us about your neighbour Lea.

We were initially introduced by a mutual friend because we share a passion for fashion design. Our interests brought us together and I am so happy for this. 

Lea is an amazing person. She is so kind and her personality is inviting, she has the most beautiful smile. She is talented and loves sharing her talent and skills with others. We laugh a lot and talk a lot when we visit and I absolutely love it.


A short guide to opposing and changing racist policies and behaviours

A commitment to being antiracist manifests in our choices.

When we encounter interpersonal racism, whether obvious or covert, there are ways to respond and interrupt it. Asking questions is a powerful tool to seek clarity or offer a new perspective.

Here are some suggestions to use in conversations when racist behavior occurs.

Find common ground.

“We don’t agree on [ __________ ], but we can agree on [ __________ ] .”

Speak your truth.

“I don’t see it the way you do. I see it as [ __________ ] .”

Give yourself the time and space you need.

“Please do not say [ ________ ] to me or around me again.”

Set boundaries.

“Please do not say [ ________ ] to me or around me again.

Offer an alternative perspective.

“Have you ever considered [ ________ ] ?”

Seek clarity.

“Tell me more about [ ________ ] .”




Central Alberta Distress Line

Red Deer Urban Aboriginal Voices Society
Amplifying the voices of Indigenous people to take community action on issues and priorities affecting our community in Red Deer.

Red Deer Native Friendship Society
Provides culturally based supports and services to both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal people focusing on programs and services that empower community where cultural diversity is understood and Aboriginal identity development is nurtured.

Ubuntu — Mobilizing Central Alberta
They are working on a reporting mechanism for victims of racism. They also provide training.

Central Alberta Refugee Effort
Offer intercultural awareness and anti-racism training

Catholic Social Services
Donation and volunteering opportunities

Welcoming and Inclusive Communities Network

Stop the Hate
Reporting hate crimes

Centre for Race Relations
Offering training and workshops on anti racism and race relations.