Bill C-279

An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression)

This bill was tabled by Randall Garrison on Sept. 22, 2011.

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How does a bill become a law?

Don’t trust Schoolhouse Rock – that’s for Americans. To become a law, a bill in the Canada’s Parliament needs to go through the following steps, and pass when voted on during each step:

  • It all starts with the first reading, when the bill is introduced.
  • Next comes the second reading, when other MPs or Senators get to debate the bill.
  • After that, the bill goes to a committee that studies and amends it line-by-line. Once they finish, the bill goes returns to the House or Senate for the report stage, where anyone can propose amendments.
  • The third reading is the moment of truth: no more changes, just a debate and a final vote on whether or not the bill should pass.
  • If a bill makes it through all of those steps – in both the House of Commons and Senate – it’s ready to get Royal Assent and become a law.

Status of this Bill

Second Reading and Referral to Committee

Activity Feed

  • spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    The House resumed from March 7 consideration of Bill C-279, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression), as reported (without amendment) from the committee, and of the motions in Group No. 1.

    March 20, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of David Sweet
    David Sweet spoke about Routine Proceedings > Petitions > Gender Identity

    Mr. Speaker, I have a petition from hundreds of constituents who have serious concerns about Bill C-279. They are convinced that all Canadians are fully protected by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the Criminal Code and a legal system that recognizes that every citizen is equal before the law. The petitioners call upon the House of Commons and Parliament to vote against Bill C-279.

    March 20, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Rob Anders
    Rob Anders spoke about Routine Proceedings > Petitions > Gender Identity

    Mr. Speaker, I stand today to present, on behalf of thousands of people who sent these to my office, petitions in opposition to Bill C-279, otherwise known as “the bathroom bill”, that would give transgendered men access to women's public washroom facilities. These constituents feel that it is the duty of the House of Commons to protect and safeguard our children from any exposure and harm that would come from giving a man access to women's public washroom facilities. I present thousands of signatures on behalf of the riding in Calgary West, and I know that there are many others that have gone to other members in this place.

    March 20, 2013,   Parliament
  • Vote 645
    That the Bill be now read a third time and do pass.
    • In favour 100%
      Green
    • In favour 100%
      Liberal
    • In favour 100%
      Bloc
    • In favour 100%
      NDP
    • Against 89%
      Conservative
    March 20, 2013
  • Vote 644
    That Bill C-279, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression), {as amended}, be concurred in at report stage [with a further amendment/with further amendments].
    • In favour 100%
      Green
    • In favour 100%
      Liberal
    • In favour 100%
      Bloc
    • In favour 100%
      NDP
    • Against 89%
      Conservative
    March 20, 2013
  • Vote 643
    That Bill C-279, in Clause 1, be amended by adding after line 21 on page 1 the following: “(2) In this section, “gender identity” means, ... more
    • In favour 100%
      Green
    • In favour 100%
      Liberal
    • In favour 100%
      Bloc
    • In favour 100%
      NDP
    • Against 91%
      Conservative
    March 20, 2013
  • Vote 642
    That Bill C-279 be amended by replacing the long title on page 1 with the following: “An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and ... more
    • In favour 100%
      Green
    • In favour 100%
      Liberal
    • In favour 100%
      Bloc
    • In favour 100%
      NDP
    • Against 89%
      Conservative
    March 20, 2013
  • Photo of Mike Wallace
    Mike Wallace spoke about Routine Proceedings > Petitions > Gender Identity

    Mr. Speaker, I have two petitions I would like to present this morning. ... more

    March 19, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Bradley Trost
    Bradley Trost spoke about Routine Proceedings > Petitions > Legislative Language

    Mr. Speaker, I have been asked by residents of Burnaby—New Westminster to table a petition that their member of Parliament refused to table. ... more

    March 8, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Jinny Sims
    Jinny Sims spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    Mr. Speaker, it is a privilege today to rise and speak in support of Bill C-279. The bill would add gender identity and gender expression to the Canadian Human Rights Act, section 2, as prohibited grounds for discrimination. It would also amend the Criminal Code to include gender identity and gender expression as distinguishing characteristics protected under section 318, and as aggravating circumstances to be taken into consideration under section 718.2, hate crimes, at the time of sentencing. ... more

    March 7, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Raymond Côté
    Raymond Côté spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    Mr. Speaker, it is a great privilege and pleasure for me to speak this evening about the hon. member for Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca's bill, particularly since I had the pleasure of examining and fine-tuning it with my Standing Committee on Justice and Human Rights colleagues. ... more

    March 7, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Michelle Rempel
    Michelle Rempel spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    Mr. Speaker, I speak today to Bill C-279. I would like to thank the member for Halifax for some of her comments here today. ... more

    March 7, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Sean Casey
    Sean Casey spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    Mr. Speaker, I am honoured this evening to speak to Bill C-279, a bill that seeks to extend the scope of human rights legislation to include transgendered Canadians. I applaud the members who have led the charge in this regard, including the member for Vancouver Centre, the member for Burnaby—Douglas, as well as the member for Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca in whose name this bill resides. ... more

    March 7, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of David Anderson
    David Anderson spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    Mr. Speaker, it is good to be back today to speak on this issue. ... more

    March 7, 2013,   Parliament
  • spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    The House resumed from February 27 consideration of Bill C-279, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression), as reported (without amendment) from the committee, and of the motions in Group No. 1

    March 7, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of David Anderson
    David Anderson spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act > Motions in Amendment

    Mr. Speaker, I am glad to be able to join the debate today on Bill C-279, an act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression). ... more

    Feb. 28, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Mylène Freeman
    Mylène Freeman spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act > Motions in Amendment

    Mr. Speaker, I am honoured to rise in the House to support Bill C-279. I congratulate my colleague from Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca for reintroducing this bill, which will add an important right to our legislation and protect people who are subject to a serious form of discrimination. ... more

    Feb. 28, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Dan Albas
    Dan Albas spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act > Motions in Amendment

    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have the opportunity to participate in the debate on Bill C-279, which is sponsored by the hon. member for Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca, an opposition member from my province of British Columbia for whom I have great respect. ... more

    Feb. 28, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Kennedy Stewart
    Kennedy Stewart spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act > Motions in Amendment

    Mr. Speaker, it is a great pleasure tonight to rise and show my very strong support for Bill C-279, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression). I will speak to the amendments as well as the general bill in my speech tonight and the shorter form as it is often called, “the gender identity bill”. ... more

    Feb. 28, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Irwin Cotler
    Irwin Cotler spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act > Motions in Amendment

    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to address amendments to Bill C-279, An Act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression) to protect transgender Canadians. In its original form, it did this by adding “gender identity” and “gender expression” to both statutes. As I stated the last time the bill was in the House, I support this important effort, which will have not only symbolic but substantive and practical effects, to provide human rights protections to groups that, for example, the Ontario Human Rights Commission has characterized as being as “disadvantaged and disenfranchised” as any in our society today. ... more

    Feb. 28, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Robert Goguen
    Robert Goguen spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act > Motions in Amendment

    Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to have this opportunity to comment on and contribute to the debate on Bill C-279, an act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression). ... more

    Feb. 27, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Andrew Scheer
    Andrew Scheer spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    There are nine motions standing on the notice paper for the report stage of the member for Esquimalt—Juan de Fuca's Bill C-279, an act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression). ... more

    Feb. 27, 2013,   Parliament
  • spoke about Private Members' Business > Canadian Human Rights Act

    The House proceeded to the consideration of Bill C-279, an act to amend the Canadian Human Rights Act and the Criminal Code (gender identity and gender expression), as reported (without amendment) from the committee.

    Feb. 27, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Randall Garrison
    Randall Garrison spoke about Routine Proceedings > Petitions > Human Rights

    Mr. Speaker, I rise today to table five petitions in support of the passage by the House of Bill C-279, the gender identity bill. These petitions contain over 600 signatures primarily from the provinces of British Columbia and Quebec, which urge the House to complete the human rights agenda and fill this gap in our human rights legislation.

    Feb. 15, 2013,   Parliament
  • Photo of Françoise Boivin
    Françoise Boivin spoke about Government Orders > Increasing Offenders' Accountability for Victims Act

    Mr. Speaker, as I said earlier, my colleague from Brome—Missisquoi brings an absolutely extraordinary background to this subject. He has done a lot of work with young people to try to lower the crime rate. He has made a start on listing many of the solutions. ... more

    Dec. 11, 2012,   Parliament
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