Ken Neumann Pride 2018 Statement

In June this year, Steelworkers from all across Canada join with LGBTQ2S+ communities to celebrate Pride Month. As a union dedicated to social justice, we have always supported equality-seeking groups in our union, our workplaces, and in society.

We applaud Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador. Since 2015, these provinces have extended their human rights laws to explicitly include gender expression and gender identity as protected grounds.

In addition, in June 2017, five years after gender identity and gender expression were added as prohibited grounds of discrimination in Ontario’s Human Rights Code, the federal government has added gender identity and gender expression to the Canadian Human Rights Act. The passage of Bill C65 later this year will further strengthen protections against harassment and violence against equality-seeking groups in workplaces under federal jurisdiction.

Since 2015, our union has supported four cases of members transitioning gender.

Improvement in protections for LGBTQ2S+ members is also reflected within our union itself. At the International Convention in August 2014, gender identity was added to the USW Constitution as a further ground of civil and human rights protection.

To continue the fight for equality for LGBTQ2S+ people, I urge you to:

  • Take part in Pride Month activities in your community
  • Create a Human Rights Committee in your local to ensure the employer’s compliance with human rights legislation
  • Support the NDP in continuing our fight for equality at the federal and provincial levels of government

In solidarity,

Ken Neumann
National Director

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