Remembrance Day Canada 2018

In 2018 Remembrance Day is Sunday, 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.

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 Stuma:

I strongly believe it should be recognized as a statutory holiday - after all its a day we have established to remember those (brave ones) who gave their lives for the country.

Posted by Todd Noel:

Itís a disgrace that Remembrance Day is not a national holiday after what the meaning of this day stand for. Time for the Government to make this a a national holiday it respect to the people of sacrifice for all of us to give us our freedom.

Posted by Denise Giroux:

Yes it should be a statutory holiday in Ontario My grandfather fought in the WWI and I feel bad when November 11 Is not on the weekend and II canít attend the ceremony at the cenotaph. My grandfather seen his best friend get killed right beside him he witnessed horrible things while serving in the war. When he came back my grandmother said her husband came back but he was not the same man. Shame on this province not honouring these soldiers that made us a great and free country. This doesnít stop our schools from educating our kids about the sacrifice these soldiers made for us and our country.

Posted by Laura Bushby:

There is no question. We need to show respect for those who paid the ultimate price of their life and others who bear physical and psychological scars such as ptsd also known as post-traumatic stress disorder so that we could have the life and liberties that we are the beneficiaries of. May we never forget and may we never take our freedoms for granted.

Posted by Rick:

I see where Remembrance Day is a Stat holiday for federally regulated employees,does this mean that federally regulated employees in Ontario are entitled to the stat holiday?

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