From exclusion to citizenship: historical discrimination against Chinese people in Vancouver


Chinese men in front of post office
(Philip Timms, Vancouver Public Library 78362)
Women standing in front of the Wong Wo Barbershop on East Pender Street
女士站立在Wong Bo 理髮室前
(Library and Archives Canada / Ronny Jaques; Copyright: Ronny Jaques; e010980495-v8.jpg)


Special City Council Meeting and Chinatown Cultural Day

On April 22, Vancouver City Council convened a Special Council meeting in Chinatown where Mayor Gregor Robertson delivered a formal apology on behalf of the City of Vancouver for past discrimination against residents of Chinese descent. The apology acknowledged the wrongdoings of past legislation, regulations, and policies of previous Vancouver City Councils. The Special Council meeting was attended by over 500 members of the Chinese community, with hundreds more who watched on screens on Keefer St. 

City of Vancouver's official apology to the Chinese community - English  (40 KB)

溫哥華市就早期歧視華裔歷史的正式道歉  (239 KB)



For the first sixty years of the City of Vancouver’s history, racial prejudice and discrimination against Chinese people was commonplace.

Based on a City Council motion passed in 2014, we are:

  1. Researching past civic laws, regulations, and policies that discriminated against Chinese people in Vancouver between 1886 and 1947
  2. Consulting with the Chinese community and experts on research findings
  3. Recommending steps and actions in support of reconciliation, including a public acknowledgement and formal apology

This initiative provides an important opportunity to learn about a lesser-known part of our city's history. While valuing the progress that's been made, we must all stay vigilant in upholding our values of equity, justice, and well-being for all.

We will present our final report to City Council in fall 2017.

Read more and get involved



  1. 就1886至1947年期間,當時市議會針對溫哥華華裔居民而制訂的歧視性法例、規則及政策進行研究
  2. 向溫市的華裔社區及專家就研究結果進行諮詢
  3. 建議可採取的步驟及行動以支持達致和解,其中包括作出公開聲明及正式道歉




Attend a public forum

Learn about our preliminary research findings. Give your input on next steps and actions to prevent discrimination against any individual or group in the future.

Spaces are limited – register early to book your preferred date.

  • Wednesday, May 17, 6:00pm to 8:00pm
  • Wednesday, May 24, 6:00pm to 8:00pm
  • Saturday, May 27, 10am to noon

Register on Eventbrite  

Can't attend and want to give your input? Email

Past updates

Winter 2017

We completed initial research on discrimination by City Hall during 1886 to 1947. Our findings show four areas of discrimination:

  1. Voting rights and citizenship
  2. Exclusion from immigration
  3. Restricting livelihoods in the areas of industry, business, and labour
  4. Segregation in housing and public spaces

On March 21, 2017, International Day to Eliminate Racial Discrimination, we announced the formation of an advisory group to guide this process. The group includes community leaders, historians, veterans, and their descendants. It will guide the rest of the process and recommend next steps.

Read the news story

Honorary members:

  • Maggie Ip
  • Howe Lee
  • The Honorable Randall Wong (retired BC Supreme Court Justice)
  • Bill Yee (retired Provincial Court Judge)


  • Eric Wong
  • Fred Kwok
  • Fred Mah
  • George Ing
  • Grace Wong
  • Hayne Wai
  • Helen Lee
  • Henry Tom
  • Henry Yu
  • Jean Barman
  • John Atkins
  • Queenie Choo
  • Sid Tan
  • Terri Mew
  • Will Tao
  • William Ma

2015 – 2016

We completed initial consultations with local historians and people with lived experience and knowledge of historical discrimination.




  • 5月17日(星期三)下午6時至8時 
  • 5月24日(星期三)下午6時至8時 
  • 5月27日(星期六)上午10時至正午12時 

在Eventbrite 上報名  





  1. 投票權及公民權利
  2. 限制移民
  3. 限制他們在工業、商業及勞工等各方面的謀生機會
  4. 在房屋及公共場所實施隔離政策




  • 葉吳美琪
  • 李悅後
  • 黃星翹(退休卑詩省高等法院法官)
  • 余宏榮(退休卑詩省法院法官)


  • 黃亮彪
  • 郭英華
  • 馬清石
  • 吳英超
  • 黃麗珠
  • 韋業慶
  • 李麗芳
  • 譚樹康
  • 余全毅
  • Jean Barman
  • John Atkins
  • 周潘坤玲
  • 周明輝
  • Terri Mew
  • 陶維
  • 馬威廉

2015 – 2016

2015 – 2016