It was 15 years ago today that arsonists destroyed the Hindu Samaj Temple on the south mountain.
The Mountain mosque was also vandalized the same night.
It was an attack that followed 9/11 with the culprits thinking they were targeting Muslims.
But it was also an attack that triggered a widespread effort to fight racism in Hamilton and make the city more inclusive.
City leaders formed the “Strengthening Hamilton Community Initiative” to which Javid Mirza was a member.
He’s also the former president of the Muslim Association of Hamilton.
He says the city has made great progress in a number of areas since that time with more and more immigrants moving to Hamilton,
But he admits improvements still need to be made.
He points to the lack of diversity within the Hamilton Police Service, City Council and even management within various Hamilton businesses.