Canada’s Justin Trudeau raises rainbow flag for Pride Month, vows to tackle historic LGBT injustices
Canada’s PM Justin Trudeau celebrated Pride Month by raising the rainbow flag and transgender flag above Parliament Hill, as he vowed to tackle the injustices faced by LGBT people.
The Canadian leader, a strong supporter of LGBT equality, took part in a Pride Month ceremony on Parliament Hill.
The leader marked the Pride celebrations by raising the rainbow flag and trans flag.
He was joined by LGBT rights supporters and Parliamentarians, including his LGBT Special Advisor Randy Boissonnault.
At the event he announced that the government will introduce legislation to make it possible to erase the convictions for Canadians who were found guilty under historical, unjust laws for sexual activity with a same sex partner.
The government says the legislation – expected to be introduced later this year – will be another concrete step towards acknowledging and addressing injustices faced by LGBTQ2 communities.
Prime Minister Trudeau said: “Our government believes in equality and equal treatment for all Canadians.
“That is why we are moving forward on legislation that makes it possible to erase the convictions of Canadians who were unjustly convicted of a crime – simply for who they were, or who they loved.
“We will be introducing legislation on this later this year, and further we will acknowledge and apologise for the historical discrimination faced by LGBTQ2 Canadians. We are committed to apologising in an inclusive and meaningful manner before the end of 2017.
“I believe that it’s essential to make amends for past wrongs, and not to simply gloss over them. Our government believes in equality and equal treatment for all Canadians. We will passionately defend the rights of all our citizens regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.
“Homophobia, biphobia and transphobia are unacceptable. In Canada we’ve come a long way, but there is still work to be done, both here in Canada and around the world.”
Mr Boissonnault added: “Today our government announced another vital step in addressing the painful history of discrimination against the LGBTQ2 communities.
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“As Pride season commences, Canadians will honour the many victories over the forces of exclusion, intolerance, and hate.
“We will also soberly acknowledge that there are many challenges still to overcome. I invite all Canadians to join in remembering the past, celebrating our progress, and working towards a better future.”
His Pride Month celebration stands in stark contrast to south of the border, where US President Donald Trump axed the annual Pride Month proclamation issued by Barack Obama.
The Republican White House has also put a stop to any festivities, deciding not to hold a Pride reception for LGBT activists.
Despite the White House’s actions, some government departments still released statements marking Pride Month.