Toronto (October 4, 2023) – Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC) acknowledges and accepts the Canadian governor general’s apology for one of her predecessors having appointed a Nazi veteran to the Order of Canada.
According to news reports, Governor General Mary Simon issued a statement apologizing for awarding the Order of Canada in 1987 to Peter Savaryn, a former chancellor of the University of Alberta and former member of the Nazi Waffen-SS, and declaring that the Golden Jubilee and Diamond Jubilee medals he had received are under examination.
Savaryn’s membership to the Order of Canada was rescinded in 2017 upon his death, as part of the Constitution of the Order of Canada.
“Following last month’s debacle in Parliament, in which a Nazi war veteran was honoured, many Canadians are just now beginning to recognize Canada's dark history of first admitting and then harbouring former Nazis and their collaborators,” said Dan Panneton, FSWC’s Director of Allyship and Community Engagement. “As more information emerges on Canadians with past Nazi ties, we expect institutions to address the mistakes made and harm caused.”