Canada House in Trafalgar Square, London—home to Canada’s High Commission—has been fitted out with a gender neutral bathroom in order to provide a transgender-inclusive environment for staff and visitors.
The idea was suggested by Canadian MP Randy Boissonnault, who advises PM Justin Trudeau on LGBT+ issues, after a recent trip to London.
A spokesperson told Pink News that: “As Canada engages with transgender activists on a regular basis, it made infinite sense for us to be able to offer suitable toilet facilities here at Canada House in order to ensure that all visitors to our building are welcomed and feel comfortable.
“A facility on our ground floor, accessible to both visitors and staff, is our new gender-neutral bathroom.”
Boissonnault is one of six openly gay MPs in the Canadian parliament and was named as Trudeau’s special advisor on LGBT+ issues last year.
At the time, Trudeau said: "We have made great strides in securing legal rights for the LGBTQ2 community in Canada – from enshrining equality rights in the Charter to the passage of the Civil Marriage Act.
"But the fight to end discrimination is not over and a lot of hard work still needs to be done. Canadians know our country is made stronger because of our diversity, not in spite of it.”
Boissonnault said he would work hard to protect the rights of the LGBT+ community and “address historical injustices they have endured”.
“I look forward to collaborating closely with Egale and other organisations in the coming months to advance the government’s agenda for equality," he said.
Boissonnault was behind the idea to send a Valentine's Day card signed by the Prime Minister to a citizen who had been bullied at work for his sexuality.
Degas Sikorski was employed by Party City in Edmonton but had not received a shift in months.
On Valentine's Day, he was given a homophobic card by his supervisor who wrote: "FA**** YOU ARE NOT GETTING SHIFTS FOR A REASON."
The note came to the attention of Boissonnault who arranged a new Valentine's Day card that was signed by a number of MPs as well as PM Trudeau.
“I said, ‘Well, Degas has allies. I’m an ally. These colleagues are allies. The prime minister is an ally'," said Boissonnault.
Trudeau's message read: “Dear Degas, Know that your friends outnumber the haters by the millions and I’m one of those friends.”