Interview with Hon. Frank Iacobucci

Hon. Frank Iacobucci describes his childhood in the east end of Vancouver during World War II. He notes that the east end was a poorer area, and emphasizes the multicultural makeup of his school and his neighbourhood. He also describes how his neighbours helped each other during the Depression. Frank’s parents, Rosina and Gabriel Iacobucci, left the Catholic Church before he was born, joined an Italian Evangelical congregation, and then began attending a Baptist church, before eventually returning to the Catholic Church. At the start of the war, Gabriel was let go from his job at the airport because of his Italian background. Further, both Rosina and Gabriel were designated enemy aliens and required to report to the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) monthly ― even though Gabriel was a Canadian citizen. When his father stopped reporting, Frank recalls that there were no consequences. Frank did not speak Italian as a child, because of the stigma of it being the “enemy language.” Frank also talks about the experiences of his neighbours, one of whom was interned at Kananaskis and Petawawa. Frank criticizes the internment as a stain on the memory of Canada; he also makes parallels between the contemporary War on Terror, as well as comments on the G20 in 2010.