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July 18, 2013
The following is being distributed at the request of the Human Rights Commission:

Human Rights Commission Recognizes and Celebrates
Pride Week with the LGBTQ Community in Newfoundland and Labrador

The Human Rights Commission supports the celebration for Pride Week held this week from July 15 to 21. Pride Week is a celebration of the diversity of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) community in Newfoundland and Labrador and the recognition of the province as an inclusive community.
“Pride Week is not only a time to celebrate the diversity of the LGBTQ community, but also to acknowledge and remember the difficult challenges the LGBTQ community has faced in its long-standing struggle for equality,” says Remzi Cej, Chair of the Human Rights Commission. “Indeed, the Pride flag is a symbol of resilience and survival in the face of historic discrimination. As we reflect on the past, let us strive to ensure that our residents never experience discrimination, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.”
The Human Rights Act, 2010 recognizes that every individual is free and equal in dignity and rights. The act protects LGBTQ individuals from human rights discrimination on the basis of prohibited grounds such as sex and sexual orientation. As a society that has made equality and diversity among our key values, it is imperative that employers and the public are aware of their obligations under the Human Rights Act, 2010 of Newfoundland and Labrador with regard to gender identity. As such, the Human Rights Commission recently developed guidelines to educate employers and the public on discrimination based on gender identity. The guidelines are available at: www.justice.gov.nl.ca/hrc/publications/gender_guidelines.pdf . Although not listed as a separate ground, complaints of discrimination made to the Human Rights Commission based on gender identity have been, and will continue to be, accepted under the ground of sex.
"Human rights protections are in place to ensure that all the residents of our province are treated with dignity and respect. The Human Rights Commission congratulates the LGBTQ community on the tireless pursuit of the protection and promotion of human rights," said Mr. Cej. “All our residents deserve a life free from discrimination and violence.”
For more information on the Human Rights Commission, please visit www.thinkhumanrights.ca
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Media contact:
Carey Majid
Executive Director
Human Rights Commission
709-729-2709, 1-800-563-5808
2013 07 18                                        10:45 a.m.

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