Students at the University of Toronto may pride themselves on their diverse campus, but they have to stand up for others when something like the Quebec City shootings occur, Dalia Hashim told a campus vigil Monday night.
“With that diversity comes an onus on each and every one of us to educate ourselves, to be there for other people, and to be there for other communities when they need it,” said Hashim, president of the Muslim Student Association, who helped plan the vigil.
Hundreds gathered at the University of Toronto’s downtown campus to stand in solidarity with the victims of the Quebec City mosque shooting.
On Sunday, a gunman killed six people and injured 19 at the Centre Culturel Islamique de Quebec.
While encouraging the hundreds of people gathered on campus, Hashim also asked people to also speak up for the Islam community.
“If you see something, say something. I know it sounds very cliche but it is very important.”
Politicians, including Mayor John Tory, also attended.
Tory said we must assure the most vulnerable people that we support them. “In this city, the most diverse city in the world, [we] don’t accept and won’t accept the notion that we divide people, that we marginalize people on the basis of where they came from, who they are, the language that they speak, or their faith.”
U of T vice provost Sandy Welsh spoke for the university’s president, Meric Gertler. She said that starting on Tuesday the school’s flag will be at half-mast to show respect for the lives lost during the shooting.
The shooter, 27-year-old Alexandre Bissonette, was charged with six counts of first-degree murder and five counts of attempted murder.