NDP MLA Spencer Chandra Herbert has tried to have B.C. Human Rights Code amended for several years
The provincial government plans to table legislation that will explicitly protect gender identity and expression in the B.C. Human Rights Code, Attorney General Suzanne Anton announced Wednesday in Vancouver.
“In British Columbia we have a human rights code that ensures no one faces discrimination based on grounds such as race, religion, place of origin, sex, or sexual orientation, amongst others,” she said, adding that everyone is protected under the code.
“However, it’s important that they understand they’re protected. Every British Columbian needs to feel protected and have confidence in that protection, no matter their gender identity or expression.”
“The proposed changes will specifically include gender identity or expression among the protected grounds of discrimination in British Columbia’s Human Rights Code,” Anton said, adding that this would specifically protect transgender people against discrimination from anyone, including landlords and employers.
Anton said the government had planned to introduce a bill to protect transgender rights next spring, but has hastened the process in order to introduce the bill next week when the legislature resumes.
B.C. Officially Includes Transgender People In Human Rights Code
British Columbia’s government is reversing its position and aligning itself with the majority of Canada to enhance protection for the rights of transgender people just days before Vancouver’s annual Pride parade.
The government will introduce amendments under the B.C. Human Rights Code next week to include “gender identity and gender expression” among the protected ground its covers, Attorney General Suzanne Anton said Wednesday.
Opposition New Democrat Spencer Chandra Herbert had introduced the changes in private member bills four times since 2011, but the Liberal government has repeatedly refused to support the legislation.
“It’s been a long road but we’re getting there,” Chandra Herbert said at a joint news conference with Anton.