Persons Day

Persons Day Quick Facts

2023 DateOctober 18, 2023
2024 DateOctober 18, 2024
Persons Day

Persons Day History

Persons Day seeks to commemorate the historic decision that allowed woman to be appointed to the Senate of Canada. This day celebrates the constitutional case of Edwards v. Canada in 1929. This case would review the British North America Act of 1867 and subsequently consider women to be part of the legal definition of persons.

Five women known as the Famous Five would be the champions of this decision and case. They were Emily Murphy, Nellie McClung, Louise McKinney, Irene Parlby, and Henrietta Muir Edwards. These activists would turn to the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council of Great Britain in 1929 to appeal their case. Persons Day is observed annually on October 18th.

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Persons Day Facts & Quotes

  • Louise McKinney was the first woman to be sworn into the British legislature. In 1917 she was sworn into the Alberta legislature.
  • On the 65th anniversary of the Persons case in 1996, the Famous 5 Foundation was established. As a non-profit corporation it set out to empower women and girls to courageously lead change that contributes to a society without boundaries for women.
  • On Persons Day, we pay tribute to the many women who fought, and those who continue to fight, to make gender equality a reality in Canada. As we celebrate Women’s History Month, I invite Canadians to learn more about the countless activists who have helped Canada become a more equal, just, and inclusive democracy. It is up to all of us, no matter our gender identity or expression, to carry their legacy forward, achieve progress in advancing gender equality, and fight discrimination of every kind in Canada and around the world - Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Persons Day 2020

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