November 20, 2018

Statement to the legislature by
the Honourable Lisa MacLeod

Minister of Children, Community and Social Services

Trans Day of Remembrance and National Child Day

Speaker I rise today to mark two special occasions in Ontario. Both are in place to honour and acknowledge some of the most vulnerable people in our province.

Last year, I was privileged to work across party lines to craft the Act recognizing November 20th as Trans Day of Remembrance. And earlier today, for the first time, we marked November 20, as Trans Day of Remembrance with a moment of silence here in this Legislature.

We are also recognizing today as National Child Day, an opportunity to celebrate our children as active participants in their communities, and who offer a meaningful voice for all of us.

By supporting all children in this province, ensuring that they are protected from harm, that they are provided with their basic needs, have access to education and every opportunity to reach their full potential, we are building a better and stronger Ontario that benefits everyone.

Today is also a reminder of our duty to ensure every child is treated with dignity, respect, and protected from abuse and sexual exploitation.

This includes helping address the unique challenges that exist for lesbian, gay, bisexual, two-spirited and transgender children and youth. So that all children can be treated fairly.

We need to have tough conversations, we need to break down barriers so that these special children and youth, and those who support them, can speak openly and without fear of reprisal, about violence or discrimination.

Child abuse is one of the most sinister acts that happens in our province. We are duty-bound to protect against child abuse, to fight sex trafficking, and prevent bullying. We’re required, by law, to report these terrible acts.

It is my honour to serve as Ontario’s Minister responsible for children and youth. Each and every day I am dedicated to being their strongest advocate.

We know we have work to do and I am committed to working with partners across government to help our children prosper.

Today Mister Speaker, we also remember and recognize members of Ontario’s Transgender community who have tragically lost their lives, and those who continue to suffer from violence and prejudice.

As Ontarians, we’re lucky to belong to a fair and just society, together we can work to uphold our shared values of respect, equality and fairness.

Today is about solidarity, reflection and sadness for those who have been lost and those who are victimized. I encourage those in the Trans community to live your lives to the fullest. Be proud Ontarians.

Mister Speaker, our government will respect and works hard for everyone in the Trans community, and for all of the people of this province.

Thank you.

The Honourable Lisa MacLeod
Minister of Children, Community and Social Services