Toronto, ON June 20, 2017 – On June 19, royal assent was given to Bill C-16 and it is now law.

The Canadian Human Rights Act has been amended with the addition of gender identity and gender expression to the list of prohibited grounds of discrimination.

The Criminal Code has been amended “to protect people who are distinguished by gender identity or expression and require judges to consideration motivation by bias, prejudice or hate based on gender identity and expression as aggravating factors at sentencing hearings.”

It is perhaps the Criminal Code amendment that is of greater concern to Catholics as, we believe that gender is and never can be a mere social construct because we are born male and female. Because Catholics also believe that there is no conflict between faith and reason, we look to science and medicine as well to help us get a better understanding of the world in which we live. Catholics understand the reality that there are people who experience gender dysphoria.

Catholics understand that violence against others, bullying, and denial of fundamental rights shared by every human being is evil. The problem with C-16 is that it could be used as a means of applying force of law against millions of Canadians who deplore discrimination against those experiencing gender dysphoria, but nonetheless believe that every person is born male or female.

Whereas this threat may not be apparent in C-16 itself, these amendments will no doubt serve as guidance for human rights commissions and tribunals along with other governing bodies to decide against those who believe that the two genders are male and female.


About the CCRL

Catholic Civil Rights League (CCRL) ( assists in creating conditions within which Catholic teachings can be better understood, cooperates with other organizations in defending civil rights in Canada, and opposes defamation and discrimination against Catholics on the basis of their beliefs. The CCRL was founded in 1985 as an independent lay organization with a large nationwide membership base. The CCRL is a Canadian non-profit organization entirely supported by the generosity of its members.

For further information:

Christian Domenic Elia, PhD
CCRL Executive Director