News Releases

News Release - Manitoba

November 20, 2023

Manitoba Government Raises Flag on Transgender Day of Remembrance

The Manitoba government is showing support for transgender Manitobans by raising the transgender flag in Memorial Park on the Transgender Day of Remembrance, Families Minister Nahanni Fontaine, minister responsible for gender equity, and Health, Seniors and Long-Term Care Minister Uzoma Asagwara, announced today.

“Today is about remembering those we’ve lost and also committing to the work we need to do to ensure our transgender, two-spirit and gender-diverse relatives can feel valued, supported and safe,” said Fontaine. “Our government will always stand in support of 2SLGBTQI+ Manitobans and against any form of discrimination or intimidation that puts these communities at risk.”

The Transgender Day of Remembrance is an annual observance on Nov. 20 to honour the memory of those whose lives have been taken in acts of anti-transgender violence. It is also a day to bring attention to the continued discrimination and violence faced by the transgender community and a call to action for a better future, noted the minister.

“Today is a day from community and for community,” said Asagwara. “We want community to know that our government supports and upholds the life-saving work being done by so many trans, two-spirit and gender-diverse Manitobans working tirelessly to make things better for the next generation. Every one of us must demand better than fear and ignorance and the harm it causes to some of our most vulnerable communities.”

The transgender flag was first flown at Memorial Park for the Transgender Day of Remembrance in 2015. Today, it is being raised by Manitoba’s first openly trans man elected as a member of the legislative assembly Logan Oxenham.

Transgender Day of Remembrance vigils were started in 1999 by transgender advocate Gwendolyn Ann Smith to honour the memory of Rita Hester, a transgender woman who was killed in 1998.

A 2022 report by Statistics Canada confirms transgender Canadians are more likely than non-transgender Canadians to experience violent victimization.

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