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Viola Desmond portrait on $10 note

Courage and Dignity

Viola Desmond was a successful black businesswoman who was jailed, convicted and fined for defiantly refusing to leave a whites-only area of a movie theatre in 1946. Her court case was an inspiration for the pursuit of racial equality across Canada. Viola’s story is part of the permanent collection at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights.

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Feel the raised ink on the portrait. Find out more

Learn more about Viola Desmond.

Learn more about Viola Desmond.

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Watch her Heritage Minute.

Watch her Heritage Minute.

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Map showing Halifax’s North End on $10 note

The Historic North End of Halifax

This historic community in Halifax was where Viola Desmond lived and worked, and served as a source of invaluable support during her struggle for justice. This artistic rendering of a historic map shows the waterfront, Citadel and Gottingen Street, the thoroughfare where Vi’s Studio of Beauty Culture was located.

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Learn more about Halifax.

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Library of Parliament’s vaulted dome ceiling on $10 note

A Record of Democracy

The Library of Parliament’s vaulted dome ceiling, capped by arched windows that flood the library with natural light, is a stunning example of the Gothic Revival style of architecture. The laws of the land are shaped by the knowledge housed in this institution of democracy.

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Look at the metallic ceiling in the large window. Find out more.

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Learn more about the Library of Parliament.

Learn more about the Library of Parliament.

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Metallic Canadian flag on $10 note

True North Strong and Free

The Canadian flag was officially adopted on February 15, 1965, a date which is celebrated today as National Flag Day.

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Look at the metallic flag. Find out more.

Learn more about our flag.

Learn more about our flag.

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Watch a vintage newsreel.

Watch a vintage newsreel.

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Metallic Coat of Arms on $10 note

Coast to Coast to Coast

Canada’s coat of arms contains our country’s motto: a mari usque ad mare, Latin for “from sea to sea.”

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Look at the metallic coat of arms. Find out more.

Learn more about our coat of arms.

Learn more about our coat of arms.

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Canadian Museum for Human Rights on $10 note

A Window into Human Rights

The Canadian Museum for Human Rights in Winnipeg, Manitoba is the first museum in the world solely dedicated to the evolution, celebration and future of human rights. The museum aims to inspire and promote respect for others while encouraging reflection and dialogue about human rights.

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Learn more about the museum.

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Ramps connecting levels of museum in background on $10 note

Connections of Strength and Hope

A series of criss-crossing ramps connect the seven levels of the Canadian Museum for Human Rights. They symbolize the history of human rights in Canada and the world—one of setbacks and contradictions, but built on strength and hope.

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Learn more about the museum architecture.

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Colour-shifting eagle feather on $10 note

Truth, Power, Freedom

For many First Nations peoples in Canada, the eagle is believed to fly higher and see further than any other bird, and an eagle feather symbolizes ideals such as truth, power and freedom. It is intended to represent the ongoing journey toward recognizing rights and freedoms for Indigenous Peoples in Canada.

Look at the colour shift from gold to green. Find out more.

Look at the colour shift from gold to green. Find out more.

Learn more about Indigenous rights.

Learn more about Indigenous rights.

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Charter excerpt on $10 note; “every individual is equal before and under the law and has the right to the equal protection and equal benefit of the law without discrimination”

Our Rights, Enshrined

The Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, entrenched in the Constitution of Canada in 1982, guarantees the fundamental rights and freedoms of individuals in the highest law of the land.

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Learn more about the Charter.

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Order your own copy of the Charter.

Order your own copy of the Charter.

Watch a vintage newsreel.

Watch a vintage newsreel.

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Laurel leaf pattern in background on $10 note

Defender of Rights

The laurel leaf, an ancient symbol of justice, appears in the grand entrance hall of the Supreme Court of Canada, the nation’s final court of appeal and ultimate judicial defender of rights in the country. A laurel leaf pattern is found in the bottom right corner on the back of the bank note.

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Learn more about the Supreme Court.

Learn more about the Supreme Court.

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