Canada’s new Holocaust memorial will stay open for winter following Jewish complaints


MONTREAL (JTA— The Canadian government backed off a decision to close the newly opened National Holocaust Memorial for the winter, apparently relenting to complaints from the Jewish community.

“Canadians will be able to reflect on the horrors committed against 6 million Jewish victims and others while paying tribute to the survivors,” Heritage Minister Melanie Joly said in a tweet Friday.

It was the second incident to embarrass the ministry, which oversees the $7.2 memorial, since it opened only two months ago. At that time, a prominent plaque at its entrance omitted reference to the Holocaust’s Jewish victims.

In October, the National Capital Commission, in charge of caretaking for national monuments, said it had to close the memorial for the winter – as it does others — because of its open-air design and concern over possible damage from snow-removal machinery.

The decision to stay open pleased the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs.

“[I]t’s appropriate that Canadians have access to this site all year,” it said in a tweet.

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