Combating Prejudice and Stereotypes

The less one resorts to stereotypes and prejudices, the more they lose their power. For example, the struggles of women's groups radically transformed the image of women in the twentieth century. The image of the subservient housewife and the one-dimensional bimbo gave way to that of the woman professional, the entrepreneur and elected politician. The sex once said to be “weaker” became equal to men, at least formally, in Canada and in many other countries. This marks one of many victories against intolerance, but constant vigilance is required to safeguard the rights acquired and continue promoting equality.

Quebec’s Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms of Quebec identifies thirteen illegal grounds for discrimination. To these universally recognized thirteen, the Tolerance Foundation adds another two: physical appearance, the basis of many instances of exclusion among young people, and Aboriginal status, which gives rise to a number of prejudices.