The founder of a Nova Scotia-based transgender rights group says Transgender Day of Remembrance is particularly important this year amid growing incidents of violence and hatred targeting young people.
Veronica Merryfield, founder of the Cape Breton Transgender Network, made the comments today while participating in a ceremony to raise the trans flag in front of the provincial legislature, marking Remembrance Day.
Merryfield says in the past two weeks she has received requests for help from five groups of parents whose children have recently experienced transphobia at school – more than she ever has received in such a short period.
She says transphobic rhetoric originating in the United States has seeped into Canada and is evident in school policies such as New Brunswick’s Policy 713 and Saskatchewan’s Parents’ Bill of Rights.
In fashion now
Both policies require students to have parental consent to use a preferred first name or pronouns at school, rules that LGBTQ rights advocates say are harmful to trans students.
Merryfield says that while Nova Scotia has given no indication that it will introduce a similar policy, transgender children in the province are at high risk of suffering from transphobia and violence.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published November 20, 2023.
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