About Us

The Greater Toronto Chapter of the National Association of Japanese Canadians (NAJC) is a member of a national organization based in Winnipeg and composed of regional chapters across Canada. www.najc.ca

Brief History
The formation of the national organization began on Labour Day 1947 when a group of community leaders, led by the late Roger Obata, gathered representatives from British Columbia to Quebec to establish a national organization to represent Japanese Canadians in their demand for equal rights enjoyed by other Canadians. With the assistance of Mike Masaoka, of the Japanese American Citizen’s League (JACL), the National Japanese Canadian Citizen’s Association (JCCA) was formed. Later the name was changed to the National Association of Japanese Canadians (NAJC); although some chapters retained the initial JCCA name. Over the years the National organization and its chapters have created a proud legacy of advocating for Japanese Canadian interests.

During the campaign for redress of property losses and unjust actions taken by the Canadian Government against our community during and after World War 11, the NAJC under president Art Miki of Winnipeg negotiated with the governments of the day for individual compensation for all those affected during the years 1942 to 1949. The Toronto Chapter JCCA executives disagreed with the goal of seeking individual compensation and sought a single sum to be under their own organizational control. Those Chapter members opposed to the Toronto JCCA’s position, organized meetings in other venues such as homes hosted by Stan and Marj Hiraki, Wes and Misao Fujiwara and advocated support of the NAJC position. As a result of the impasse, a new organization was formed under the name of the North York Chapter of the NAJC. When the Toronto JCCA formally separated from the National NAJC in protest, the North York Chapter became the sole Toronto NAJC representative organization and changed its name again to The Greater Toronto Chapter of the National Association of Japanese Canadians under President Wes Fuijiwara. The Greater Toronto Chapter of the NAJC played a leading role in achieving the Redress Agreement of September 22, 1988.

Today, almost 65 years later the Greater Toronto Chapter continues to have a vital role in the field of human rights while promoting Japanese Canadian history with greater local emphasis on youth, arts and culture.

Objectives

1. Enable all Japanese Canadians to work together on matters of concern to the Japanese Canadian Community, and to undertake collective action for the betterment of its political, social, educational and economic welfare.

2. To strive for equal rights and liberties for all persons in Canada, irrespective of and not limited to, race, colour, creed, national origin or sex.

3. To promote and encourage Japanese Canadians to work together on matters of concern to all Canadians and undertake collective action for a better Canada and a world free from racism, poverty, inequality and war.

4. To co-operate with organizations sharing the aims of the NAJC in protecting the rights of all groups in Canada and to abolish any restrictive measures which may still exist or may be imposed.

5. To assist all Japanese Canadian organizations striving for common objectives and to channel their efforts, where feasible, under a central administration.

6. To promote and encourage among Japanese Canadians, the cultural, educational, social and recreational activities conducive to better citizenship and to stress to Japanese Canadians the duties, obligations and responsibilities inherent in Canadian citizenship and encourage them to become more conscious of all the rights and privileges of citizenship.

7. To present to other organizations and levels of governments whenever and wherever possible, the interests of Japanese Canadians in national, provincial and local matters and to inform these organizations and governments of concerns affecting Japanese Canadians.