The purpose of the National Day Against Homophobia is to raise people’s awareness of homophobia and transphobia’s harmful effects, to provide a positive image of lesbian, gay, bi and trans people, and to combat exclusion. See for more info.


This year the National Day Against Homophobia has also become the World Day Against Homophobia. Several European countries are now participating, and the date has been moved from June 1 to May 17 to recognize the anniversary of the World Health Organization removing homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses.


“Egale asks all levels of government to officially recognize the National Day Against Homophobia, and to take action to educate the public about the need to end this form of prejudice and discrimination,” said Egale President Gemma Hickey. “Discrimination may be more discreet these days, but it’s just as harmful. It’s up to government to work to make Canada a place where all feel welcome and included.”


“Despite the legal gains made by our communities in the past several years, prejudice against our communities is alive and well in Canada,” added Gilles Marchildon, Egale’s Executive Director. “Homophobic behaviour is any expression of a negative attitude towards lesbian, gay, or bisexual people. Transphobic behaviour is directed at transgender and transsexual people. These behaviours have a significant and detrimental impact on us, on Canadian society as a whole, and particularly on young people.”


“It’s time for Canadians to come to grips with the root causes of the rampant bullying and harassment faced by LGBT youth in the education system,” continued Mr. Marchildon. “School boards have a duty to be proactive in preventing homophobic behaviour.


Even more important is that parents and teachers take individual responsibility and speak out against homophobic and transphobic behaviour when and where they see it – in the classroom, the playground, or at home.


Egale Canada advances equality and justice for lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans-identified (LGBT) people, and their families, across Canada. Founded in 1986, Egale’s work includes political action, legal interventions and public education and awareness.


For more information:

416-964-7887 ex 21