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Canadian Senator apologises for using n-word during trans rights debate

Joseph McCormick May 18, 2017
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Welsh equestrian Megan Lewis walks her horse past Canada's parliament on May 7, 2015 in Ottawa, Ontario. She is on the last leg of a six-year around the world ride to raise money for a children's charity founded by her husband. AFP PHOTO MICHEL COMTE (Photo credit should read MICHEL COMTE/AFP/Getty Images)

A Canadian Senator has apologised for using a racial slur during a debate on trans rights.

Senator Andre Pratte apologised for using the n-word on Wednesday during a Senate committee hearing.

He said in an interview with the Canadian Press that he used the slur to make a point about limits to free speech.

Justin Trudeau

The Senator said the limits apply to talking about groups that are vulnerable or typically face discrimination.

Going on he said witnesses at the committee were making arguments around free speech during a debate on the Liberal government’s legislation to ban anti-trans discrimination.

The bill would ban discrimination in jobs or the workplace based on gender identity or gender expression.

It would also amend the Candian Criminal Code and extend hate speech laws protecting trans people.

Pratte joined the Senate in 2016 after being a journalist for 35 years. He is in support of the bill.

Last week, Feminists activists in Canada said they had been “bullied and blackmailed” by a union group over their opposition to a trans rights bill.

A spokesperson for the Vancouver Rape Relief and Women’s Shelter has expressed concerns over the transgender rights bill C-16.

Hilla Kerner says the bill, which would add “gender identity” and “gender expression” into protected categories in the Canadian Human Rights Act and Criminal Code threatens “female-born” women’s spaces.

Canada’s government earlier today said it will apologise to thousands of citizens affected by an ‘LGBT purge’ of the military and public service.

The country is also about to introduce gender-inclusive passports which will offer a third, unspecified option for those who do not fall into the female or male category.

Canada’s High Commission to the UK in London earlier this year installed a gender-neutral toilet to be more trans-inclusive.

More: Americas, Canada, Canada, Justin Trudeau, Trans, Transgender

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