Canada on Tuesday unveiled a new $1 ‘Equality coin’ commemorating the 50th anniversary of the decriminalization of homosexuality but some LGBTQ activists are unhappy because they say equality was not achieved in 1969 and has not yet been achieved.
The coin was designed by Vancouver-based artist Joe Average and bears the words, Equality-Égalité.
Others are unhappy because the coin suggests credit for equality should be given to “the Canadian government — specifically … former prime minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau” when many gains were made before his efforts began in 1967, Global News reports.
Activist group ‘The Anti-69 Network’ protested at the coin’s unveiling, releasing a statement: “Despite the important gains won by our movements and organizing, equality has still not been established in 2019. The continuing struggles are against the blood donation bans, HIV and sex worker criminalization, anti-black racism, which impacts many in our communities, racist and heterosexist and anti-trans policing, the continuing criminalization of consensual homosexual activities, the treatment of LGBTQ2S+ refugees and much more.”
Mint president Marie Lemay said the design was “inspirational” and “It’s our hope that this coin will spark conversation,” adding, “I see this morning it already has and spurred reflection on 50 years of progress, while acknowledging … that the journey towards full equality for Canadians of all genders, identities, and sexual orientations was hard fought and is not yet over.”