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

Break-in at Prince Rupert Post Office causes service delay

Office closed most of July 8 morning after overnight forced entry

U.S. tug firm to be sentenced for 2016 spill in B.C. First Nation’s territory

The Nathan E. Stewart spilled 110,000 litres of diesel and heavy oils in October 2016

Provincial stage for Prince Rupert athletes

Northwest girls softball team will look to be a mainstay at tournament after long awaited return

VIDEO: Prince Rupert’s female runners shed their shirts for Global Sports Bra Squad Day

The event encourages athletes to run in whatever makes them comfortable regardless of shape or size

VIDEO: Prince Rupert’s female runners shed their shirts for Global Sports Bra Squad Day

The event encourages athletes to run in whatever makes them comfortable regardless of shape or size

Anglican Church to review governance structure after same-sex marriage change fails

Some say the current system to change doctrine gives too much voting power to a smaller class of bishops

B.C. adding fast-charge stations for electric highway trips

Okanagan, Vancouver Island, Kootenay stations ready for use

Worried about bats? Here’s what to do if you come across one in B.C.

Bat expert with the BC Community Bat Program urges caution around the small creatures

B.C. on right road with tougher ride-hailing driver rules, says expert

The provincial government is holding firm that ride-hailing drivers have a Class 4 licence

RCMP investigating alleged ‘sexual misconduct’ by cyclist on BCIT campus

BCIT said they were reviewing video evidence of the incident

New home cost dips in B.C.’s large urban centres

Victoria, Kelowna, Vancouver prices decline from last year

Graphic suicide scene edited out of ‘13 Reasons Why’ finale

Suicide prevention groups support the decision

Nine kittens and cats rescued after being locked in bins in northern B.C.: SPCA

SPCA says cats were starving, and matted with feces and urine

Most Read