Diversity is one of the Markham's six strategic priorities. These strategic priorities were identified through extensive community involvement and a number of action plans have been developed to support each of these priorities. The other five priorities are: growth management; transportation and transit; municipal services; leisure master plan and public safety; and the environment.
Markham is working to provide programs and services that address the diverse and varied needs of Markham residents and businesses, as well as to promote inclusiveness both in the workplace and in the community. Our Diversity Action Plan called “Everyone Welcome” and the municipality’s commitment to United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) through the Council of Municipalities Against Racism and Discrimination are two guiding documents which allow departments and individuals to make Markham an even stronger municipality that can bring its knowledge of how to value diversity in individuals, actions and thought to every interaction.
Some of the Markham's achievements in the year since the Diversity Action Plan was launched include:
- an internal staff Diversity Intranet Site
- Respect in the Workplace-Anti-Harassment training across the organization
- the launch of an external Portal with consideration of accessibility in the use of text size, colour, imagery and Google translate
- a youth mentoring program for new immigrants
- South Asian and Chinese food guide
- enhancements to the Markham's built environment to support AODA legislation
Markham regularly hosts or partners with others to host a number of cultural events. In 2011, the Markham hosted or partnered in the hosting of more than 85 cultural events. Some of these events include Actifest, Black History Month Awards, Canada Day Celebration, Channukah Menorah lighting Celebration, Chinese New Year Celebration, Christmas tree lighting celebration, Junior Achievement’s Diversity Day, Many Faces of Markham, Markham Fair, Markham Festival, Milliken Children’s Festival, South Asian Heritage Month, Taste of Asia, Pride Week flag raising, Thornhill Festival, Unionville Festival and Yom HaShoah.