Controversy Erupts as Opposition Leader Criticizes Canada’s Redesigned Passport

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded by criticizing the former Conservative government's treatment of veterans.

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The Canadian government has revealed a newly redesigned passport that features a shift in design, emphasizing natural landscapes and wildlife while reducing the representation of Canadian historical moments and monuments. Families, Children and Social Development Minister Karina Gould and Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Minister Sean Fraser spoke at a news conference, highlighting that the new design is the result of extensive consultation spanning a decade.

Minister Fraser explained that the feedback received emphasized the desire to celebrate Canada’s diversity, inclusion, and natural environment. The new passport incorporates images of animals such as bears, narwhals, and owls, as well as scenes of children jumping into a lake, reflecting a more nature-oriented theme compared to the current passport, which includes images like Parliament’s Centre Block and the last spike of the Canadian Pacific Railway.

One of the driving factors for the redesign was to enhance passport security. Minister Fraser emphasized that by consistently updating the images and design, counterfeiters face greater challenges in replicating the document. The new passport retains the coat of arms from the current version but adds a prominent maple leaf on the cover.

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Minister Gould expressed her belief that the new passport design truly represents Canada, stating that the selected images capture traditional Canadian elements such as polar bears, people enjoying a lake, and birds in winter, reflecting the spirit of being Canadian.

However, the decision to remove an image of the Vimy Ridge Memorial in the redesign drew criticism from the Royal Canadian Legion, who expressed disappointment over the omission.

Conservative Leader Pierre Poilievre also raised concerns in the House of Commons, questioning why the government removed the image and arguing that it disregards the sacrifices made by those who fought for Canadian freedom. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau responded by criticizing the former Conservative government’s treatment of veterans.

While the redesign has sparked debate and differing opinions, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh refrained from commenting on the appearance of the new passport, stating that he doesn’t hold a strong opinion on the matter.

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