Viola Desmond first Canadian woman on banknote

– A black civil rights leader who led a struggle against anti-black segregation and racism in Canada in the 1940s will be the first Canadian woman to figure on a banknote.

Viola Desmond will appear on the Canadian $10 bill – replacing the nation’s first prime minister John A Macdonald who will be moved to a higher bill – when new banknotes go into circulation in 2018, Canadian Finance Minister Bill Morneau announced on Thursday morning.

While she is often compared to Rosa Parks – the civil rights leader who refused to give up her seat at the front of the bus in Montgomery, Alabama, in 1955 – Cooper said Desmond’s case should be viewed within its Canadian context.

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