PHOTOS: New commemorative loonie marks progress’ for LGBTQ2 people

The Royal Canadian Mint has unveiled a commemorative loonie meant to mark what it calls a key milestone for lesbian, gay, transgender, queer and two-spirited people.

The agency says the new one-dollar coin pays tribute to Parliament’s passing of legislation that “initiated the decriminalization of homosexuality in Canada.”

The coin, which starts circulating today, combines the words “Equality-Egalite” with the work of Vancouver-based artist Joe Average.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau says there is more work to be done to advance equality and the federal government will continue to listen to the voices of protesters who are unhappy with the coin.

Historians and advocates attending today’s unveiling raised concerns about the message behind the new loonie, saying it mistakenly suggests equality has been achieved and largely as a result of the federal government’s actions.

The group also held a news conference near the mint’s event to challenge myths surrounding the 1969 Criminal Code reform.

READ MORE: B.C. man kicked out of military in LGBT Purge hears PM’s apology

READ MORE: Cheers erupt as Federal Court judge approves historic gay purge settlement

York University historian Tom Hooper, who is part of the group, says LGTBTQ people faced continued criminalization over the decades that followed the legal changes.

He said discrimination against LGBTQ people persists today, noting as examples that trans and queer people of colour still face issues with policing and people with HIV remain subject to criminalization.

The mint “could have consulted people who have knowledge of this history but they didn’t,” Hooper said, adding he hopes the agency will do so in the future.

He acknowledged no campaign can compete with roughly three million coins but said the project is at least fuelling a public conversation about LGBTQ history.

“As a historian, I’m hoping to inform as many people as I can about our history. So in some ways the coin is opening up that opportunity,” he said.

The mint has said it is largely informed by the Department of Canadian Heritage and its “anniversaries of significance” when it comes to selecting commemorative themes for coins.

The Canadian Press


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Cumberland joins other communities in plastic ban response

Village collaborates with Squamish, Tofino following court’s quash of single-use regulation

Construction set to start on Comox Valley Water Treatment Project

Final steps are moving ahead in order to begin construction on the… Continue reading

Call out for artists to participate in Keeping It Living art show for Kus-kus-sum project

Comox Valley Project Watershed Society, in collaboration with Bayside Cafe, is hosting… Continue reading

Courtenay achieves climate action milestone

The City of Courtenay’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in corporate… Continue reading

Comox Valley climate crisis series continues with a look at local altered landscapes

World Community’s four-part series Addressing the Climate Crisis: Activism, Adaptation, and Resilience… Continue reading

‘I shouldn’t have done it,’ Trudeau says of brownface photo

Trudeau says he also wore makeup while performing a version of a Harry Belafonte song

Busy month of August for Mountainaire Avian Rescue Society

The following is a monthly update providing readers with a glimpse of… Continue reading

B.C. ‘tent city’ disputes spark call for local government autonomy

UBCM backs Maple Ridge after province overrules city

B.C. drug dealers arrested after traffic stop near Banff turns into helicopter pursuit

Antonio Nolasco-Padia, 23, and Dina Anthony, 55, both well-known to Chilliwack law enforcement

B.C. MLA calls on province to restrict vaping as first related illness appears in Canada

Todd Stone, Liberal MLA for Kamloops-South Thompson, introduced an anti-vaping bill in April

Chilliwack woman wins right to medically assisted death after three-year court battle

Julia Lamb has been the lead plaintiff in a legal battle to ease restrictions on Canada’s assisted dying laws

B.C. bus crash survivor petitions feds to fix road where classmates died

UVic student’s petition well over halfway to 5k signature goal

Most Read