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Monybany Minyang Dau
Experience with Racism and Discrimination

Time 0:02:47


As an immigrant that emigrated from one country to another, from one country to another, you are expecting challenges. You expected the worse and I was prepared for that. But the one thing that I was not prepared them was for is racist challenges. I was prepared that thing will be difficult for me if I in the competition with a Canadian born in a job he may get it first before I get it despite my qualification, and I knew that, I was prepare for that. But I have not been prepared that I will be attack on the street. Just because the colour of my skin. It is something that come more as a shock.

One day in Brooks I was attacked by five Caucasian guy, those I don’t even know. And it started because I found them playing the pool and I joined them and one of them start calling my names—calling names, talking bad about black people, so I decided to leave the scene, but they won’t let me. They follow me outside the building and they attack me. Almost look like my teeth, you know. And when I went to the police, the police didn’t file charges against them. In fact Brooks become like- Alabama of 1960s United States. People were telling us to go back home where we come from. People were calling us niggers, names. We once found in our doorstep a written saying, you are not welcome here, go back home. And it signed it three cross which is KKK. Yeah.

When I came to Red Deer I start working at the gas station which I’m working right now there and—you know there’s so many good people, a lot of them, but there’s always one or two that will be willing to erase all the good thing that you have been going through all day. People start calling my name there, start calling me United Nation guy, meaning that I’m refugee, I’m not supposed to be here, you know. People start telling me, Speak English. And I thought I was speaking English, I thought I was doing my best after six languages, you know.

Monybany Minyang Dau was born in Atar, Sudan in 1975. During the Second Sudanese Civil War, Monybany volunteered to join the Sudan People’s Liberation Army, and fought as a child soldier in South Sudan. He served until 1986 when he and 600 other child soldiers were sent to Cuba. Cuba supported the South Sudanese independence movement and agreed to support the young soldiers affected by the war.

After the collapse of the Soviet Union, Cuba suffered economically and could no longer support Monybany or the other former child soldiers. Through the United Nations, Monybany applied for refugee status in Canada. He arrived in September 1998 and found work in both Red Deer, Alberta and Brooks, Alberta and was able to support his family members in Sudan.

Monybany currently lives in Red Deer with his wife and two sons, and is working toward a career in business management. He recently made a documentary called The Ladder of My Life about his experiences as a child soldier and refugee.

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