An excerpt from The Beaverton Presents Glorious and/or Free: The True History of Canada. Available where books are sold.
June 10th, 2010
OTTAWA – Prime Minister Stephen Harper has issued an official apology to the victims of the long-form census and offer financial compensation for the millions of Canadians who had to deal with it every five years.
The federal government has already announced that it has taken measures to protect citizens from the horrors of a long-form census by making it a voluntary survey.
“There was 6.4 million households who were traumatized by the questions the long-form census asked,” a solemn Harper announced. “Many who had to fill these out while family members watched on helplessly or were forced to participate. Year after year, we asked 20% of Canadians to do what no other Canadian had to do; answer extra questions. On behalf of the Canadian government, I am truly sorry.”
The Association for the Victims of the Long-Form Census was on hand with Industry Minister Tony Clement after Harper made the announcement.
“I still get nightmares about my experience in 2006,” explained Kurt Flanigan of Regina. “I remember that day in May like it was yesterday. When I opened the census in the mail, it was a lot heavier than usual. I knew I had no way of getting out of it. The law forced me to do it.”
The foyer outside the House of Commons became quiet as the innocent 45-year-old construction worker’s terrifying story.
“It forced me to…to give information…about…my form of…transportation to work,” sobbed Flanigan. “It had no right to ask something like that! I feel so violated and dirty!”
Clement consoled Flanigan with a hug and repeated “it’s not your fault…it’s not your fault.”