Ottawa, ON – The Hon. Candice Bergen, Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada and the Official Opposition, released the following statement on Journey to Freedom Day:

“Today Vietnamese-Canadians mark Journey to Freedom Day. On this occasion, we remember the journey of the Vietnamese boat people, who fled communism as refugees after the fall of Saigon in 1975. Tragically, thousands lost their lives during the dangerous voyage.

“Over 120,000 refugees were eventually resettled in Canada, and in the years since their arrival, Vietnamese-Canadians have blessed our country through countless contributions to their local neighbourhoods and communities.

“The spirit of compassion demonstrated by Canada at the time of the Vietnamese boat people remains a mark of pride for our country. It inspires Canadians to maintain that legacy of openness and generosity for which we’re known.

“As we reflect on the lessons and legacy of the Vietnamese boat people, I encourage all Canadians to renew our commitment to freedom, peace and security, and celebrate the values that keep our country strong.”