Should equality for trans people be in human rights legislation? YES.

Recently Xtra published an article / opinion piece by Rob Salerno called “Another take on the ‘trans rights’ bill RIGHTS / Does insisting on enumeration actually reduce trans peoples’ civil rights?”. Xtra also published an excellent response by Christin Malloy, “Toby’s Act is more than symbolic”. I recommend you read both articles. As I was thinking about the article by Rob Salerno something was bothering me that went beyond the main argument. The problem? Rob Salermo sounds a lot like Conservative MPP Randy Hillier when he wrote about Ontario’s Bill C-13, the anti-bulying legislation currently before the province that was introduced by the Liberals.

Salerno states, in a paragraph of its own:

But it’s unclear if the bill will actually help trans people. On the contrary, it seems the ongoing debate is doing more harm than good.

This sounds a lot like Hillier:

 However, this policy will have dire consequences for those it is intended to benefit.

and

The last thing a vulnerable child needs is more differentiation from others in the schoolyard. The result will be nothing less than painting a bull’s eye or target on their backs.

From my perspective Rob Salermo is coming across less like an ally, but more like those who are anti-trans. How would Salermo respond if the argument was that sexual orientation should not be added in to the Ontario Human Rights act because the Ontario Human Rights Commission already considers homosexual people to be protected under the existing human rights legislation. This is, of course, a hypothetical example. The Ontario Human Rights Code does include sexual orientation as an explicit group to be protected.

All we are asking is to be treated equally under the law, not treated equally if we file a complaint and the person hearing the case decides to go along with established case law.

 

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