Wednesday night the House of Commons passed C-279, a bill that provides human rights protections to transgender Canadians. Since its introduction over a year ago, critics have reduced it to the "Bathroom Bill", a distorted characterization of what is truly important domestic human rights legislation. This legislation not only carries great symbolic value, but would also produce three substantive and practical effects to help reduce the frequency of discrimination and violence against transgendered Canadians. Moreover, there is precedent for the use of the term "gender identity" in Canadian provincial as well as international contexts.
Danielle Smith came out against Alberta Health Insurance funding genital reconstruction surgery. She said it was because she didn't want vital resources spent on elective medicine when there was important care to be paid for. But currently, a trans person expressing a need for hormone replacement therapy, has a very long -- and difficult -- road ahead of them.