Finance & Economics

Bank of Canada issues its first vertical banknote

New $10 banknote featuring Viola Desmond has been unveiled on International Women’s Day


Bank of Canada issues its first vertical banknote. Source:

Starting today, November 19, the new vertical $10 banknote featuring the portrait of Viola Desmond will gradually enter circulation.

The banknote has been unveiled by the Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Bank of Canada Governor Stephen S. Poloz on International Women’s Day.

Viola Desmond was selected for the new $10 banknote by Minister Morneau following an open call to Canadians to nominate an iconic Canadian woman for the next redesigned banknote. A successful Black Nova Scotian businesswoman, Viola Desmond defiantly refused to leave a whites-only area of a movie theatre in 1946 and was subsequently jailed, convicted and fined. Her court case is one of the first known legal challenges against racial segregation brought forth by a Black woman in Canada.

This new $10 note is the first vertically oriented banknote issued in Canada. This will allow for a more prominent image of Viola Desmond and differentiates this new $10 note from the current polymer notes.

SEE ALSO: Which countries use polymer banknotes

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