MONTREAL and TORONTO, Nov. 13, 2015 /CNW Telbec/ - Councillor Mary Fragedakis (Toronto) and Councillor Marvin Rotrand (Montreal) are asking Finance Minister William Francis Morneau to send a signal to the Bank of Canada and to the Royal Mint indicating that women should appear on future Canadian bank notes.
The city councillors are reacting to a letter from Bank of Canada Governor, Mr. Stephen Poloz, indicating that Canadien women may possibly appear on the next series of Canadian bank notes which are to be designed if the Minister of Finance is agreeable.
"Councillor Rotrand and myself proposed, earlier this year, motions which were adopted by our respective City Councils urging the Bank of Canada and the Royal Mint to assure that women appear prominently on Canadian money", said Councillor Mary Fragedakis.
"Queen Elizabeth II is depicted in her role as head of state but when she is no longer head of state Canada may have no women honoured on the country's currency. Canada has featured no women on its currency since 2004 when the $50 bill honouring Therese Casgrain and the Famous Five was withdrawn for a new issue depicting the icebreaker Amundsen", added Councillor Fragedakis.
"Mr. Poloz's letter is an opening. We seek a far more pro-active statement and we have written to Minister Morneau to ask that the new Government let the Bank of Canada and the Royal Mint know that promoting the equality of men and women is a fundamental Canadian value", said Marvin Rotrand.
Toronto and Montreal have urged Canadians to support a petition at : https://www.change.org/p/bank-of-canada-add-women-from-canadian-history-to-canadian-bank-notes which urges the Bank of Canada and the Royal Mint to honour women who have significantly contributed to Canada on our bank notes and coins. The petition has currently garnered some 64,300 names.
The United States Treasury will soon replace Alexander Hamilton on the $10 bill with a woman chosen through extensive consultations. The Bank of England is introducing a new ₤10 note that will feature Jane Austen. Countries such as Australia and New Zealand regularly feature women on currency issues.
"It is indeed 2015", said Councillors Fragedakis and Rotrand, paraphrasing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. "We hope the promotion of gender parity at the Cabinet level will see a signal sent that the absence of women on Canada's currency must be addressed immediately", they concluded.
Motion adopted by Toronto City Council: http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2015.MM9.6
Motion adopted by Montreal City Council (in French): https://goo.gl/sjLKOL
SOURCE Councillor Mary Fragedakis and Councillor Marvin Rotrand