Randall Garrison's Statement on Bill C-204 (Gender Identity & Gender Expression)

Please see below the statement made by Randall Garrison, MP for Esquimalt - Sannich - Sooke and NDP Critic for LGBTQ Issues on December 9th, 2015 introducing Bill C-204: An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression).


Mr. Speaker, I rise today to introduce a bill that, in fact, was passed twice by the House of Commons, in the 40th Parliament and again in the 41st Parliament, each time only to be blocked by the unelected Senate.

Before we can take up consideration of this bill again, more than five years will have passed since this House first voted to explicitly guarantee transgender and gender-variant Canadians the same rights and protections the rest of us already enjoy. Meanwhile, transgender people continue to suffer from high levels of discrimination and all too often, violence.

I was pleased to hear that the new government is prepared to act quickly on this fundamental rights question. I look forward to working with the Minister of Justice and members from all parties to make sure that either the government's bill or my bill is adopted as soon as possible.

Sine I introduced Bill C-279 in 2011, seven provinces have added these same provisions to their human rights codes.

Let us start down the road toward full equality for transgender Canadians by acting quickly to fill this significant gap in our human rights legislation.