Remembrance Day Canada 2019

In 2019 Remembrance Day is Monday, November 11.

On remembrance day members of the armed forces (soldiers, sailors and airmen) are commemorated.

The other common name for this day is Armistice Day which marks the date and time when armies stopped fighting World War I. on November 11th at 11am in 1918 (the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month). Some 100,000 Canadian soldiers died in the First and Second World Wars.

In Canada, Remembrance Day is a federal statutory holiday - with a notable exception of NS, NWT, ON and QC - as it is in many other countries in the world where this day is observed on the national level.

All government buildings fly the Canadian flag this day and people remember those who fought for Canada during a two minute silence at 11am. Many people wear poppies before and on Remembrance Day to show their respect and support for Canadian troops. Poppies are generally handed out free but often a voluntary donation is given in exchange.

In the United States this day is called Veteran's Day and is also observed on November 11.

Should Remembrance Day be a stat holiday in every province?

We continue to receive lots of messages from people all over the country who are outraged why Remembrance Day is not a stat holiday everywhere in Canada. Indeed, it would make sense to make this a stat holiday in every province and territory - even in Ontario. But not everyone agrees. Send us your thoughts about this issue in the comment area near the bottom of this page.

Recently we received a comment from Jason and would like to post it on this page because we think that Jason makes a very good point in his message:

"Please DO NOT make Remembrance Day a statutory holiday in Ontario. Family Day is a much more appreciated break for families in the heart of the long cold depressing winter. Remembrance Day is better observered in a ceremony at your school, community centre or place of work."

Could this be true? What would most people do with another day off work? Sleep in, watch TV, play video games or celebrate our war heroes? Compare to Thanksgiving Day when most people cook a turkey and drink lots of beer instead of being genuinely grateful about anything.

I asked my 8 year old: would you learn anything about remembrance day if you stayed at home or would you probably just watch movies and play with your little brother? Her answer was: "I would just play and watch movies. At school at least I don't forget to talk about why we should try and not go to war anymore. Well I can't forget because the teachers tell us all sorts of things and we have to listen."From a random dad

The comments at the bottom of this page overwhelmingly favour making this a stat holiday across Canada. Maybe it should be a stat holiday for adults and a mandatory school day for kids?

Bill C-597 aimed to make Remembrance Day a national legal holiday. It received a third reading but did not become law. Even if the bill had passed it would be up to the provinces to decide what days are statutory holidays. It's an often overlooked and little known fact that the Royal Canadian Legion does not endorse the bill out of concern that Canadians would not take time off to remember and would treat a day off as a holiday. They want the kids in school - so they can talk about it and learn about it - not sit at home and know nothing about it. It's about respecting the veterns and teaching about them not having a day off to do nothing.

If an organized observance was held at schools and workplaces people would be much more likely to spend time participating and keeping the importance of Remembrance Day top of mind, won't they?

Perhaphs we, as a nation, will never come to a consensus and agree that Remembrance Day should or should not be a holiday in every province but we should at the very least agree to the comments of a self-identified "Angry Canadian Preteen" who proposes that we spend more time preventing future atrocities and less time looking back: Let's use Remembrance Day as a reminder to all of us that for the remaining 364 days we need to focus our discussion and actions to ensure that future generations won't have to fight in wars at all.

P.S.: It seems disrespctful and outright greedy to stock shelves with Christmas gear before Remembrance Day. What do you think? When should stores start displaying Christmas decorations and gifts?

Share your holiday story, idea or comments

Send us your thoughts, comments and ideas about Remembrance Day in Canada. What should and should't be done on this day? How best to pay respect to current and past members of the armed forces?

Post your comments

Recent comments
Posted by Jeff:

I think it should be a stat holiday but worked holiday not a day off as the soldiers who fought for our freedom didn't get the day off as we shouldn't but we should be paid for it as a holiday

Posted by Dano:

only these useless politicians can change it, and make it a country wide stat holiday (it is unfair)

Posted by Nancy:

Remembrance Day should absolutely be a Stat Holiday! Why on earth are our veterans not recognized?! I also further believe that holidays noted as a Stat for some and not others should also be changed, everyone no matter which province or if you are a government worker! Everyone should be treated equally.

Posted by Kinga Barwig:

I think a half day holiday is what is needed. Offices and retail would be allowed to open for business after 1 pm, and retail stores after 1:30 pm to give all those who want to, a chance to go to ceremonies and services. 50% of a day's stat pay would be paid. School boards can choose to hold 1/2 classes and perhaps have a morning assembly which is optional for kids to attend (or they can go with their parents to another ceremony) or they can give the day off.

Posted by Logan:

After reading this article and some of the comments I feel I have to object respectfully to some of the views on this topic. Iíve always believed that Remembrance Day should not only be a nationally recognized stat holiday but also the most celebrated. Itís great that we have Christmas, New Yearís Day, family day etc. But reality is that every holiday we have and celebrate would quite possibly not exist without the sacrifices that were made by the people we honour on Remembrance Day.

Read featured posts

View the 50 most recent comments

View comments: 50 - 100

View comments: 100+

Feedback & ideas