On June 18th, the House of Commons adjourned, setting the stage for an election campaign that will end the 41st session of Parliament. This is an appropriate time to look back on the past four years and see what was accomplished, especially through the lens of ARPA Canada and the issues that we focus on. Pre-born Human Rights: When the Conservatives were handed a majority in the last federal election, many Christians hoped that pre-born human rights would finally be addressed. These hopes were in vain. Although some courageous MPs stood up for the pre-born, the leadership of all the political parties in the House of Commons did their utmost to suppress these efforts. Motion 312, championed by MP Stephen Woodworth, was the first motion that held promise. It asked that “a special committee of the House of Commons be appointed and directed to review the declaration in Subsection 223(1) of the Criminal Code of Canada which states that a child becomes a human being only at the moment of complete birth.” Local ARPA chapters hosted presentations by Mr. Woodworth on this motion and many ARPA supporters encouraged MPs to support it. But with the party leaders all vocally opposed, the motion died in the House by a vote of 203 to 91. Yet Motion 312 reignited a discussion that was quiet for too long. Momentum for addressing this injustice was building.
Bill C-279 would add "gender identity" as another identifiable group in a section of the Criminal Code and the Canadian Human Rights Act, giving individuals who feel they are transgendered extra protections under the law. The bill passed through the House of Commons and is now in the Senate. Now is the time to stop it before it becomes law! Our video below goes into detail to explain the many problems that arise when law and public policy are based on how people feel about themselves, rather an any objective reality. Transgendered Canadians, like everyone else, are already equally protected under the law. Please urge the Senators from your province to oppose Bill C-279. 1) Easymail letter for BC Senators2) Easymail letter for Alberta Senators3) Easymail letter for Ontario Senators4) Find a listing of all the Senators, along with sample letters here.
Although we would love to see our leaders stand up for what is right, sometimes we have to rely on other means to promote good law in Canada. When it comes to Bill C-279, which would add extra protections in law for transgendered Canadians, a majority of both the House of Commons and Senate support this dangerous legislation (learn more about it here). But that does not mean it will pass. If it can be stalled long enough and doesn't make it through all the required steps, it will not...
ARPA Note: We have followed this bill extensively but encourage you to persist in opposing it. You can find a sample letter and contact information for all the Senators here. Find a video, action items, and more information here. REAL WOMEN OF CANADA - June 4, 2013: The bill on the transgendered (Bill C-279) is now being reviewed by the Senate Committee on Human Rights. Supporters of this bill claim that it is merely a “simple” amendment to extend human rights protection to another category of deserving individuals. Yet, when the bill was reviewed by the House of Commons Justice Committee in December, 2012, testimony was provided by the Canadian Human Rights Commission, and also the officials from the Department of Justice. They testified that there was no requirement to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code, since the transgendered were already protected under the category of “sex” in the Canadian Human Rights Act. They also referred to the existence of substantial case law to support this position. Why, then, has this transgendered bill been placed before Parliament?