May 11, 2023
Official Statement from The Vimy Foundation Regarding the Removal of Canadian Monuments and Historic Sites including the Canadian National Vimy Memorial from Canadian Passport
On May 10, 2023, changes were announced to the Canadian passport including the removal of the Canadian National Vimy Memorial, and other historical images. The decision was stated as having been made in order to ensure security against counterfeit passports.
The Vimy Foundation understands the need for security, but is disappointed in the decision to remove one of Canada’s most important icons, which comes just one month after the 106th anniversary of the Battle of Vimy Ridge. Over 7,000 Canadians were wounded in the battle, and 3,598 soldiers lost their lives. The Canadian National Vimy Memorial does not just represent those soldiers who died at Vimy, it also represents Canadian unity and achievement. It represents people who came from many different backgrounds and many cultures in favour of achieving something greater, together.
The Vimy Foundation’s mission is always to teach Canadians about our shared history. We work hard through our innovative youth programs, commemorative initiatives, and educational resources to ensure that Canadians continue to find meaning and relevance in our collective history.
The Canadian National Vimy Memorial is an internationally recognised symbol and appropriate for an identity document that is used globally. The decision to remove historical events from the passport is a missed opportunity for thoughtful discussion around the importance of history, and the possibilities for a conversation about what Canadians feel are important moments that unite them.
As one of the leading organisations involved in the advocacy effort to include the Canadian National Vimy Memorial on the passport, we are saddened to learn the monument will no longer be included. The images we choose to convey Canadian stories internationally are important, and the Vimy Memorial is a visual touchstone which highlights unity, achievement, and leadership. The First World War victory at Vimy Ridge in April 1917, was a milestone where Canada came of age and was recognized on the world stage and acts as a symbol, to this day, of this rich legacy.
For more information contact:
Kevin McGaw, Communications Coordinator, firstname.lastname@example.org