Mr. Silver: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I also rise today on behalf of the Liberal caucus to pay tribute to the International Day Against Homophobia, Transphobia and Biphobia.
Today we speak out against discrimination and celebrate our differences. The federal Liberals have introduced Bill C‑16, legislation that will allow for human rights protection under the grounds of “gender identity and gender expression”. The introduction of this type of legislation has been a difficult road — something that has been swept under the rug by many — and it is the first time that a sitting government has introduced this type of bill.
We support this type of legislation. It is a change that is long overdue, and I would like to thank the federal Liberal government for bringing it forward today.
Madam Speaker, our society is shifting the way it thinks, becoming more progressive and more accepting. This is the open-mindedness that we should all aspire to.
Today, as we celebrate to raise awareness around the world, rainbow balloons were being released from St. Isaac’s Cathedral in St. Petersburg, Russia. The City of Brisbane has lit up the Brisbane bridge in rainbow colours. The United Nations has put out a song, entitled Why We Fight. This is truly an international phenomenon and I want to keep that ball rolling.
On June 25 and 26, Queer Yukon will be putting on their annual pride parade, along with a number of events to celebrate the LGBTQ community. I encourage all of you listening and all of you here today to attend the events to show your support. If you would like to know more about this, there are a number of resources, including http://www.queeryukon.com/ and alsohttp://www.dayagainsthomophobia.org/.
Madam Speaker, for too long our society has singled out those who are different, bullied them and made inappropriate comments or gestures. Change is in the air, and I encourage everyone to get on the bandwagon with me and my legislative colleagues. Thank you, Madam Speaker.
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