After years of negotiations between the federal government and representatives from families who had paid the head tax, an agreement was reached under Prime Minister Stephen Harper. Harper delivered an apology that recognized the important role that Chinese Canadians have played in Canadian history, and the injustice of the head tax. The estimated twenty living head tax payers received approximately $20,000 in compensation, as did the living spouses of deceased head tax payers. In addition, the government established a fund for community historical projects to increase awareness about discriminatory immigration policies and other instances of racism.
Growth and recognition: 1967–2011
Hew Ting Tung, wife of a head–tax payer, with compensation cheque, 2006. Courtesy of Poy Tong.
Head tax apology and redress (June 22, 2006)
Listen to Vera Pon, the wife of a head–tax payer, describe her feelings about the head tax apology, after years of involvement in the redress movement. click for summary
Family Reunifications and Illegal Immigration: