The first person to be honoured on the new holiday is civil rights activist Viola Desmond. The new holiday doesn't have a name yet. High school students will be involved in pitching a permanent name and ideas for the next 12 people or events to be honoured. Each year, a different contribution to Nova Scotia's history will be featured. Officials say the name of the holiday should instill pride in being Nova Scotian.
Viola Desmond, who owned a hairdressing business was jailed and fined in 1946 after she refused to give up her seat in a white section of a New Glasgow movie theatre. She lost her court battle but her fight ignited a discussion of Nova Scotia's segregation laws and led to its dismantling. Desmond was only officially pardoned in 2010 and was featured on a commemorative stamp from Canada Post in 2012.
Click here to watch a documentary about Desmond's life story and struggle for equality.