Message from Deputy Minister Jody Thomas on Public Service Pride Week 2020

August 24, 2020 - Defence Stories

message from the deputy minister

Public Service Pride Week 2020 is an opportunity for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Two-Spirit, Plus (LGBTQ2+) Defence Team members to celebrate their identity, resilience, and positive contributions to Canada’s public service. Those of us who are friends, colleagues, family members and loved ones are invited to celebrate, too. And we can be purposeful in our actions to be good and supportive allies.  

We know that some LGBTQ2+ colleagues, past and present, have been made to feel unwelcome. There is absolutely no place for that discrimination in the Defence Team. Any hateful or discriminatory conduct is unacceptable and directly counter to our values as public servants and as Canadians. To those who are struggling—please know you are part of this team. You belong. You are not alone.

Throughout our Defence Team, we have many dedicated colleagues who are actively working to create a safer, more inclusive and more respectful environment for all. Our Defence Team Pride Network Co-Chairs, Kirk/Kaiya Hamilton and Maj André Jean, dedicate significant time and effort every day. Their commitment and actions, and those of Defence Team members like them, are a testament to the true spirit of public service.  

We also deeply appreciate the many Defence Team members who are actively making a difference in their immediate workplaces as Ambassadors for the Positive Space program. Supported by their Chain of Command, their service directly contributes to the creation of a safe and inclusive work environment for everyone, including Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Two-Spirit and all other members of the communities.

And to all LGBTQ2+ Defence Team members, Happy Pride, and thank you for all the work that you do. We are proud of you, and proud to serve with you. 

Jody Thomas
Deputy Minister of National Defence 

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