Transgender voices on Bill C-16 and the struggles that led to it

Transgender Canadians are greeting the proposed new legal protections introduced in Bill C-16 Tuesday with cautious optimism, describing them as an important first step in eliminating the widespread discrimination they've faced. We asked five individuals how they think the bill might change the lives of transgender people.

Liberals' new legislation aims to eliminate discrimination everywhere from workplace to health care system

Lucas Silveira, is the lead singer and guitarist in the Toronto band The Cliks and an outspoken member of the transgender community. He says the new legal protections introduced Tuesday will help change public attitudes toward transgender people. (CBC)

Transgender Canadians are greeting the proposed new legal protections introduced in the Liberals' Bill C-16 Tuesday with cautious optimism, describing them as a significant first step in creating the awareness necessary to counter the widespread discrimination they've faced everywhere from the workplace to the health care system.

"It's an important first step to have a legal basis to challenge the obstacles that we face in the community," said Melissa Hudson. 

She and several other members of the transgender community in Toronto spoke to CBC about how Bill C-16 might change their own lives and whether it will lead to broader acceptance of transgender people.

Hudson, musician Lucas Silveira, LGBT health researcher Alex Abramovich and others spoke about some of the struggles they've faced living as transgender people in a society that has often treated them with open hostility.

Hear what they had to say in the videos below.

Impact of Bill C-16

Transgender voices: On Bill C-16

7 years ago
Duration 1:12
Transgender Torontonians discuss how new transgender rights protections will change their own lives and public attitudes.

On discrimination in the workplace

Transgender voices: On workplace discrimination

7 years ago
Duration 1:46
Workplace discrimination is something many transgender individuals are familiar with. Five of them talk to CBC about their experiences.

Struggles accessing health care

Transgender voices: On health care struggles

7 years ago
Duration 1:04
Musician Lucas Silveira and researcher Alex Abramovich talk about the obstacles they've had to overcome in accessing health are as transgender individuals