The Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will formally apologise to Canadians who were convicted of “gross indecency” and fired from civil service jobs because of their sexual orientation and gender identity.
The announcement which came via Trudeau’s Facebook page says that his government “will offer a formal apology to LGBTQ2 Canadians in the House of Commons — for the persecution & injustices they have suffered, and to advance together on the path to equality & inclusion.”
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reported Trudeau will also formally apologise to Canadians who were fired from the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the country’s military and civil service because of their sexual orientation or gender identity.
PM Trudeau’s advisor on LGBT and intersex issues, MP Randy Boissonnault confirmed at the WorldPride International Human Rights Conference in Madrid that the men who were convicted under the law would have their convictions expunged.
However, at the time, Boissonnault did not provide a specific timeline as to when the Canadian government was planning to formally apologise to them.
“It will be a historic day for LGBTQ2 communities and for Canada,” Boissonnault stated on his Twitter account following Trudeau’s announcement. “Diversity makes us stronger.”
Trudeau’s announcement has been praised by many LGBTI rights groups including Canadian LGBT and intersex advocacy group, Egale Canada, who said the “long-awaited apology” is “one step closer to starting the process of healing.”
One step closer to starting the process of healing. The long awaited apology is scheduled for Nov. 28. https://t.co/PJJsUvqxPM
— Egale Canada (@egalecanada) November 20, 2017
Homosexuality remains criminalised in more over 70 countries around the world. Iran, Saudi Arabia, and Mauritania are among a handful of nations in which punish individuals convicted of engaging in consensual same-sex sexual activity face the death penalty.
Canada officially decriminalised consensual same-sex sexual relations in 1969.