December 9th, 2015

NDP re-introduces trans rights bill

Canada’s new parliament will once again have the opportunity to add gender identity and gender expression to the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code.

“Transgender and gender variant Canadians deserve the same rights and protections that all other Canadians already enjoy,” said NDP LGBTQ critic, Randall Garrison (Esquimalt-Saanich-Sooke). “It has been more than five years since the House of Commons first passed this legislation. Transgender Canadians who continue to be subject to high levels of discrimination and even violence are counting on this Parliament to act now.”

Garrison’s bill would amend the Canadian Human Rights Act to prohibit discrimination on the grounds of gender identity and gender expression. It will also amend the Canadian Criminal Code to include gender identity and gender expression as a recognized group where offences are motivated by bias, prejudice or hate.

This is Garrison’s second attempt and the NDP’s third attempt at ensuring the rights and safety of Transgender and gender variant Canadians are enshrined in Canadian law. In the previous parliament Garrison’s bill won the support of the House of Commons only to die in the Senate for a second time.

“When I was first elected in 2011 I made the promise that I would do everything I could to ensure this legislation becomes law,” said Garrison. “Today, I reaffirm my commitment to continue this fight for equality and justice in Canada.”