Members of the NDP LGBTQ Caucus presented a package of initiatives today to help bring about full equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Canadians.
“There is still much unfinished business when it comes to achieving full equality for the LGBTQ community in Canada,” said LGBTQ critic for the Official Opposition Randall Garrison (Esquimalt-Juan de Fuca). "That’s why New Democrats are putting forward a package of measures aimed at bringing about full equality for the LGBTQ community now."
“If we are to build a more inclusive Canada it is necessary to acknowledge the harmful history of homophobia and transphobia in Canada,” said Deputy Leader Libby Davies (Vancouver East). “We can begin by recognizing the harm that was done when Canada unfairly fired public servants or discharged members of the Canadian Forces solely on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity.”
“Many subtle and not so subtle discriminatory policies and practices remain in place in Canada,” said MP Craig Scott (Toronto Danforth). “It is past time to end discriminatory practices like the ban on blood and organ donations by gay men and past time to remove the unequal age of consent for anal sex from Canadian law.”
The package of measures the NDP has introduced in the House includes:
· Bill C-279, which would guarantee equal rights for transgender and gender variant Canadians
· Motion M-516, which calls for an end to discriminatory policies on blood and organ donation from gay men
· Bill C-600, which would suspend criminal records for gay offences which are no longer illegal
· Bill C-448, which would equalize the age of consent for all by repealing the unconstitutional section 159 from the Criminal Code
· Motion M-517, which would revise service records for those discharged from the Canadian Forces on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity
· Motion M-521, which would secure an apology for civil servants fired on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity