Finally, some good news! Excellent and exciting news, in fact. Canada’s House of Commons passed a bill today that will amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and Criminal Code, adding protective measures for transgender and transsexual people. The final vote was 143 for and 135 against the bill. Some Liberals voted against it and some Conservatives voted for it. Bill C-389, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression), is a private member’s bill that was first debated on May 10, 2010.
The Registered Nurses Association of Ontario website urged Canadian nurses to contact their members of parliament to support the bill. The RNAO writes, “By updating the Canadian Human Rights Act to include gender identity and gender expression as prohibited grounds for discrimination and amending the Criminal Code of Canada to include gender identity and gender expression in the hate crime and sentencing provisions, Bill C-389 is an essential step in providing full human rights protection for one of the most marginalized groups in our society. Transsexual and transgender people all too often experience discrimination, harassment, and violence because of their gender identity and gender expression. These injustices prevent access to safe learning environments at school, deny employment opportunity and stability, hinder access to income security, food security, and housing, and create barriers for appropriate, inclusive health and human services.” See more here.
The right wing and conservative Christian blogs are all hot and bothered by the bill’s passing, warning us that now transgenderism will be taught in kindergarten (the shock, the horror!) and worse yet, strict sex segregation in washroms will be harder to enforce. I won’t provide links to them. Googling REAL Women of Canada (a conservative women’s group) will get you some of it. And I’ll add links later to coverage by the LGBT press.
Really wonderful to have good news for a change.