New $10 bill unveiled featuring civil rights activist Viola Desmond

New $10 bill unveiled featuring civil rights activist Viola Desmond

The Bank of Canada hid a digital easter-egg in its website displaying the new $10 bill, which was revealed on Thursday in Halifax and features Canadian civil rights icon Viola Desmond. Now in her 90s, Robson captivated the Halifax audience with her genuine delight at seeing her sister on Canadian currency.

"As I said, the ultimate goal of our communications campaign is to drive different communities of interest to the core Viola Desmond/rights and social justice story - a serious and important theme", wrote Harrison. "And well, I was speechless -my family would have liked that but for once in my life I was speechless", she said.

The new $10 bill was unveiled by Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz.

"It was long past time for a banknote to feature an iconic Canadian woman", Poloz said.

"One woman's actions can really make a difference", Robson, 91, said in the video of her sneak preview, shared by the Bank of Canada.

Canada unveiled its first-ever bank note bearing vertical images, honoring a woman who stood up against racism more than seven decades ago.

Viola Desmond $10 Bank Note
Viola Desmond $10 Bank Note

The new purple polymer bill is the first vertically oriented bank note issued in Canada.

The back of the $10 bank note features the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. "It's attractive", she told an audience in Halifax.

The segregated theatre relegated black patrons to the balcony, while floor seating was reserved for whites. This happened nine years before Rosa Parks refused to sit in the back of a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. "There was no movement behind her, she was ahead of the times".

Desmond, 32, was dragged out of the theatre by police and jailed for defiantly sitting in the "whites only" section of a film house.

Desmond died in 1965, and the province gave her a posthumous free pardon in 2010, recognizing the injustice she and other black Nova Scotians suffered.

"Thank you, thank you, thank you for that", she said on Thursday.

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