Prime Minister Stephen Harper today issued the following statement on the occasion of Victoria Day:
“Today, Laureen and I join Canadians from across the country to officially celebrate the birthday of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Queen of Canada.
“This year marks an historic moment of tremendous significance for both our Queen and country. On September 9, Her Majesty’s reign will officially surpass that of her great-great-grandmother, Queen Victoria, making her the longest reigning Sovereign in the modern era of our country. In the entire history of Canada, only the reign of King Louis XIV was longer at 72 years.
“For over 63 years, Her Majesty has served Canada and Canadians with wisdom, dignity and dedication. It is for this reason that later this year we will commemorate her historic reign in a variety of visible and meaningful ways, including the awarding of the first Canadian Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Scholarship to students for international exchanges across the Commonwealth, the issuing of commemorative coins (Royal Canadian Mint), a stamp (Canada Post) and a $20 bank note (Bank of Canada). The Government of Canada will also broadly distribute a special edition of its educational booklet on the Canadian Crown – A Crown of Maples / La Couronne canadienne – including to individuals who become Canada’s newest citizens at citizenship court ceremonies.
“As we move closer to celebrating the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017, we are reminded of the many proud chapters of our history in which the Queen played a pivotal role, thus emphasizing the central role of the Crown in both the daily life and identity of our country.
“On this Victoria Day, let us reflect on Her Majesty’s enduring service based on a deep affection for and unwavering dedication to this country and all Canadians. We wish Her Majesty continued health and happiness in the years to come.”