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Transgender rights advocates urge governments to move beyond supportive words

OTTAWA — Advocates say they’re tired of seeing politicians release supportive statements during Transgender Awareness Week without following up with action.

In the Ontario legislature this week, New Democrat member Kristyn Wong-Tam reintroduced a private member’s bill calling on the health minister to create an advisory committee on gender-affirming care. 

But Wong-Tam’s request for unanimous support for the bill, which is aimed at improving access to gender-affirming health care, was not supported by the entire legislature.

A similar piece of legislation was introduced more than a year ago and failed to pass. 

Wong-Tam says the decision to delay the motion shows how little the Progressive Conservative government cares about fixing the health-care system. 

Ahead of Transgender Remembrance Day on Sunday, advocates say they want lawmakers and Canadians to move beyond performative allyship and back their words with action. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 18, 2022.

The Canadian Press