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Human rights museum receives royal assent

Rightwing group urges members to flood public consultation with 'conservative' input

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights was brought one step closer to reality yesterday, but a rightwing group is up in arms to stop the museum from “championing” homosexuality.

Bill C-42, an act to amend the Museum Act, received royal assent Mar 13. It creates the proposed human rights museum in downtown Winnipeg as a Crown corporation and sets out its powers and purpose.

The museum’s website says the project is envisioned as a “centre dedicated to promoting understanding of and respect for human rights, including women’s equality, the rights of the disabled, labour rights and others, and for ethnic, religious, and racial diversity.”

While gay and lesbian rights are not explicitly listed on the museum’s website, a rightwing group does not want to see any exhibits about “liberal values”.

REAL Women of Canada sent an action alert to its members about the museum last month. The group calls on its members to flood the museum’s online public consultation process with conservative input.

“We want it to reflect basic human rights, not the trendy rights contributed by recent court decisions,” says the action alert.

The action alert claims that the group is concerned that the museum “would be used as a powerful tool to champion the Liberal government’s interpretation of human rights, such as abortion rights, feminism, homosexuality, etc. with only some legitimate exhibits sprinkled here and there to give the museum the appearance of legitimacy.”

The online consultation process is still open, but only until Mar 15. It is being used by the museum to “assist its decision-making on the content and programming of the museum,” says the Ministry of Canadian Heritage’s website.

HAVE YOUR SAY! Fill out the online public consultation form below. It takes only a few minutes, and you will not be asked for your name or contact information.Public consultation: Canadian Museum for Human Rights