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Ontario’s recognition of Trans Day of Remembrance is a step towards justice

December 14, 2017

Toronto – Unifor recognizes Ontario lawmakers’ move to proclaim November 20 the Transgender Day of Remembrance as an important move for human rights, and urges politicians in other jurisdictions to follow suit.

“Every person should be free to express their gender identity or expression, but transgender peoples in our communities continue to face high rates of violence and discrimination because of their identity,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor National President. “Recognition of November 20 is a public declaration that this violence is wrong, and that transgender people including transgender children should be protected from hate.”

Bill 74, the Trans Day of Remembrance Act, was originally brought forward by NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo in 2016, and was finally adopted by the Ontario government on Tuesday, December 12, 2017. The Bill proclaims November 20 as the Trans Day of Remembrance and calls on the legislature to observe a minute of silence to honour all the lives of transgender people who have died as a result of transphobic, homophobic and gender based violence.

“This Bill recognizes that transgender and gender non-conforming people face widespread and systemic discrimination in Ontario, and in Canada. This is witnessed through overt violence, but also through barriers to accessing healthcare, good jobs, and stable housing,” said Naureen Rizvi, Ontario Regional Director. “November 20 is an important day to honour those whose lives have been taken by violence and systems of oppression, but it is also our shared responsibility to promote equity and inclusion so that not one more life is lost.”

For further information: please contact Unifor Communications National Representative Sarah McCue at or 416-458-3307 (cell).