C-279 passes the House

The transgendered rights bill goes to the Senate

C-279, the transgendered rights bill, has passed the House of Commons with amendments by a vote of 149-137.

Randall Garrison’s bill was supported by the New Democrats, the majority of Liberals (Judy Sgro and John McKay abstained), the Bloc Quebecois, Bruce Hyer, Elizabeth May and, by my unofficial count, 17 Conservative MPs: Erin O’Toole, Bernard Trottier, Terrence Young, David Wilks, Laurie Hawn, Michael Chong, Chris Alexander, Shelly Glover, Kellie Leitch, Cathy McLeod, Deepak Obhrai, Gerald Keddy, Jim Flaherty, John Baird, James Moore, Lisa Raitt and John Duncan.

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Mr. Garrison has released the following statement.

Today, New Democrats are proud to have contributed to ensuring equal protection under the law from discrimination and hatred based on gender identity.

We are happy there was all party support for formal protection of Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Variant Canadians’ rights under the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code with Bill C-279.

We need to recognize the work of the many people and organizations across the country who worked hard to advance this important issue.

Our efforts represent a huge step forward but there is still much work to be done to ensure equal access for Trans Canadians to simple services like health care, housing, and jobs. Transgender and Transsexual citizens are among the most marginalized and are too often victims of harassment and acts of violence.

We must continue to act on this important issue and, now that the bill has passed through the House of Commons, we urge the Senate to move quickly to guarantee the same rights and protections for Transsexual, Transgender, and Gender Variant Canadians that all of us enjoy.

Update 10:30pm. The Canadian Press counts 16 Conservative MPs who supported the bill. I’m not sure how to account for the discrepancy. I’ll consult the official roll call in the morning to double-check my tally.

Update 9:55am. The official tally makes it 18 Conservatives. Somehow I missed Bruce Stanton.