House of Commons passes bill to protect trans people's human rights


It isn’t law yet; first it has to pass the Senate, which it must do before an election is called. However, even if it fails to do so, we’ll reintroduce it again and again until it passes (it took Svend Robinson 16 years to pass the same protections for sexual orientation).

I’ve been working extremely hard on this for a few years now, especially over the last year (the bill hit second reading in May), and it’s extremely exciting to see it passed.

Besides getting the bill passed, I hope that the debate will lead to human rights protections in the various provinces and territories, as well. Currently, the Northwest Territories are the only one with protection on the basis of gender identity.

I’ve seen the trans community galvanized on the issue and a lot of people are feeling that they may have a hope of having their elected officials recognize their existence, equality as citizens, and human dignity, or at least are feeling that they can demand that of them.

What the fuck is the House of Commons? Doesn’t sound American, so I’ll just assume it’s not important. :stuck_out_tongue:

I should also say that it’s especially poignant for me because Bill, one of the finest human beings it’s ever been my pleasure to work with, has announced he won’t run again in the next election. He has been fighting for these protections literally since his maiden speech, and it’s a fitting swan song for him.

Congrats. You wouldn’t happen to have a handy link that lists how MPs voted on this, would you?


There’s a list showing how MPs voted on it here.

Awesome news! I heard about this yesterday, and thought of you, matt.

Awesome, matt! Congratulations!

(It’s nice having a Doper near the levers of power…)

Thanks for that, though the names I was looking for were the colour I expected rather than the colour I hoped.

Not important to you, that is.

Moderator note:

Please refrain from the bad jokes, or at least the ones that manage to pack so much insularity, chauvinism, and profanity into such a small space.

No warning issued.


Don’t get too excited, guys. Stephen Harper can and will kill it in the Senate.

It’s exciting enough just getting it through the House, which for private members’ legislation – especially on this kind of subject – was difficult enough to imagine happening six months ago. As I said, the community has been really inspired by this, and a lot of NGOs who decided to endorse the bill – unions, the Canadian Bar Association, the Ontario Nurses’ Association, the United Church of Canada, and plenty of others – have been sensitized by that process to trans issues, as have a lot of people who’ve followed the debate. That only bodes well for this or a future bill, and for the trans community at large.

That’s very true. This bill may not lead to concrete changes, but it does point to an encouraging shift in public opinion. That’s definitely something to get excited about.

What will it take to get rid of this guy (and the rest of the Conservative and Liberal MPs who voted Nay)? It’s sad that this is even up for debate: here is a person, they deserve the same respect and legal protections as any other person. How on earth can anyone justify saying no to that?

Congratulations on getting the bill this far, and I hope it doesn’t die in the Senate.

I don’t know. The Conservatives have a majority in the Senate now, but many of those Conservative senators don’t seem to be all that socially conservative.

What’s more likely to happen, as matt says, is that an election will be called before the Senate gets to vote on the bill.

Yay, my MP voted yea!

matt, can you point me to the statement in support from the CBA? I missed hearing about that.

I took heart that John Baird, Lisa Raitt, Lawrence Cannon, Shelly Glover, Gerald Keddy and James Moore voted in favour. That must have taken some guts. That Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Jason Kenney, Julian Fantino, Tony Clement, Peter Kent, Peter MacKay, Stockwell Day and crew voted against doesn’t surprise me in the least - they’ve never failed to confirm my worst opinion of them.

I’m thinking of writing letters to the Conservatives who voted for - as soon as I come up with a better wording than ‘You’re less of a shit than I thought.’, I’ll get to it. :slight_smile: