On November 19 the Bank of Canada released the new vertical $10 bank note into circulation. It is Canada’s first vertically oriented bank note.
The new bank note features the portrait of social justice icon Viola Desmond. Desmond’s sister Wanda Robson was present at the issuing ceremony at the Canadian Museum for Human Rights (CMHR) in Winnipeg. The museum is also featured on the new note.
Canadians will start to see this new note over the coming weeks and months as it gradually enters into circulation alongside existing $10 notes.
The new bank note has enhanced security features including:
- a colour-shifting eagle feather, which changes from gold to green;
- detailed metallic images in and around the large transparent window—the Library of Parliament’s vaulted dome ceiling, maple leaves, and Canada’s flag and coat of arms;
- raised ink on the portrait, the word “Canada” and the large number at the bottom; and
- the use of a single piece of smooth polymer with transparent areas for each note.
The new note also has a suite of accessibility features for Canadians who are blind or partially sighted, including its distinct purple colour, tactile features and high-contrast numerals.
Viola Desmond was chosen as the portrait subject following the Bank NOTE-able public consultation campaign, which invited Canadians to nominate an iconic Canadian woman to appear on the next bank note.
Desmond, a successful Nova Scotia businesswoman, defiantly refused to leave a whites-only area of a movie theatre in 1946. The ensuing court case was an inspiration for the pursuit of racial equality across Canada. A map of the historic North End of Halifax, where she lived and worked, is also shown on the note.
You can watch a video about the new $10 note here.