In 2003, Ontario and British Columbia became the first two provinces to legalize same-sex marriage. Afterwards, all of Canada made same-sex marriage legal with the Civil Marriage Act on July 20th, 2005. With this act, the definitions “husband and wife” was changed to a spouse and the term natural parent to legal parent. Marriage, though under federal jurisdiction in Canada, the provinces manage the solemnization of the ceremonies and the marriage licenses. In 2002, the Ontario Superior Court rules, for the first time in Canadian history, in favor of same-sex marriages under the law. The process of the first legalization in Ontario to the last ones in Nunavut, Alberta, Prince Edward Island and North West Territories (through the Civil Marriage Act) wasn’t an easy journey – but it was definitely worth it.
In July of 2002, the Ontario Superior Court rules – for the first time in Canadian history – in favor of same-sex marriages under the law. However, at the same time, Alberta passes a bill that bans same-sex marriage. That same year Ontario claims only federal government can decide who can marry.
In July of 2003, almost a year after Ontario, British Columbia becomes the second province to legalize same-sex marriage. In August of 2003 after an intense debate, the United Church of Canada shows their support for same-sex marriage and urges Ottawa to uphold same-sex marriage the same way as heterosexual ones. Later, in that same year, BC becomes the second province to legalize same-sex marriage.
LGTQ+ people were discriminated against all throughout history. On Canada 150 it’s important to acknowledge how Canada came to be the diverse country it is. After debates, bills, and rights Canada became the fourth country to legalize same-sex marriage in 2005.