On 12 April 2017, Marc Garneau celebrated the Day of Pink. Every year, on the second Wednesday of April, Canadians wear pink to celebrate diversity and raise awareness against homophobia, transphobia, transmisogyny, and bullying. Activities were organized by the Social Justice and Equity Committee (SJEC) and Gender and Sexuality Alliance (GSA) to commemorate the day.
At lunch, the SJEC and GSA had a table in the cafeteria to collect signatures to support the cause. Approximately sixty students wrote their names on pink paper shirts, which were later put up onto a banner in the galleria. Students could also participate in a contest by taking a picture in front of the Day of Pink banner and posting it onto Facebook with the hashtag #MGCIDayofPink. The winner will be chosen on Friday and will receive a fifteen dollar Tim Horton’s gift card.
Along with collecting pledges, small, pink, felt t-shirt pins were distributed starting on the prior Monday, 10 April. Over one hundred fifty pins were handed out to stimulate the conversation about diversity and bullying. Another way that SJEC and GSA encouraged this conversation was by going to classes and having discussions about the LGBTQ community. The two clubs held these workshops on 11 April and 12 April. Other students could also drop by the classes during their spares to join in on the conversation.
The Day of Pink began ten years ago in Nova Scotia, after two high school students noticed their classmates bullying a gay student for wearing pink. They not only stopped the bullying but also decided to take action against homophobia and transphobia. They came to school a few days later wearing pink and convinced the rest of the students to do the same. The entire school chose to take a stand and prevent further bullying. The movement continued to grow, and is now known as the Day of Pink.
At MGCI, many students came to school wearing pink to support the cause. Shaynah Tahir said, “It’s a very special day. My friends and I wore pink to show that we are against bullying and that we wanted to support everyone.” When asked about the success of the event, Lisa Wang, the Social Justice and Equity Convener, said, “The event went pretty well overall. The classroom workshops were definitely a more effective component of the campaign.”
All in all, Marc Garneau proudly participated in the Day of Pink. Along with the millions of other participants across the country, the students and staff of MGCI took a stand against bullying and promoted diversity.