Go Topless Day occurs in Vancouver on August 24 (warning: nudity)

Some women's rights activists feel it's discriminatory and sexist when they're told to cover their breasts.

In response, this year's topless walk in Vancouver takes place on August 24 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. along Robson Street between Denman and Hornby streets.

The GoTopless.org website says it's all about women's equality.

That's why the walk occurs on the weekend closest to August 26, which is when American women won the right to vote.

It's designed to send a political message that isn't often heard in the mainstream media.

Canada's Topfree Equal Rights Association argues that equal rights should include the freedom to expose female breasts in public.

"Women pay severely for North America's leering punishment of their breasts," the association states on its website. "Many find themselves the object of unwanted and unwarranted attention from men in positions of power over them. Many have debilitating body image problems, hating the breasts on their own, unique bodies. Many undergo hazardous cosmetic surgery to conform to some non-existent standard. To please others, many wear bras that confine and hurt and may be harmful. Many are afraid to breastfeed, especially with others present."

More than a decade ago, a B.C. woman named Linda Meyer launched a successful court challenge against a ban on female toplessness in Maple Ridge.

She was later told by the Vancouver Police Department that it wouldn't hassle women who go top-free within city limits.

Meanwhile at this year's Vancouver Fringe Festival, a 52-year-old mother and performer, Tasha Daimant, will further the goal of reducing any stigma by presenting the Human Body Project Vulnerability Vigil.

According to her website, Daimant "stands naked in public to share and create a space for vulnerability. She holds a large sign in a gesture of gentleness for those who are deeply affronted by public nudity."

When she's done this in the past, she has invited people to join her—and often they take her up on the offer. The next one in Vancouver is scheduled for September 12 from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Studio 1398 (1398 Cartwright Street on Granville Island).

In addition to the vigil, Daimant will also present six shows of the Human Body Project at the Vancouver Fringe Festival. 

Below, you can see a 2012 video of San Francisco Go Topless activists explaining why they've also taken up this issue.

** Warning: the video includes nudity.

Should adult women have the same legal right as adult men to go top-free in public?

Yes 88%
398 votes
No 12%
52 votes
Comments (18) Add New Comment
James Blatchford
Oh please..not more Linda Meyer.

Maple Ridge Bylaws Department
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David
While I would not for a minute mind seeing equal rights for both genders to expose their chests, some of which I would enjoy seeing (that's why), I do remember one - and only one - convincing argument some years ago by an Ontario judge. Who was presiding over a case of a women exposing herself over this issue. The judge (a she!) said: the difference is, male breasts are not sexually explicit. Female breasts are. Case closed.
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PirateJohn
Female breasts are only explicit if you make them so. Just stop making them so and they won't be. After all, ankles used to be considered explicit.
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Malcolm Boura
This is not just about women's rights, it is also about children's rights. Prudery is child abuse and ideology is not an excuse.
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Natty
Until the day comes when boobies can be glanced at by all without lecherous or lewd behavior, mine will be safely tucked in my shirt, thank you. It's not a prude thing, it's a safety thing. It would be highly uncomfortable to be judged (even more so than the norm) based on a certain pair of body parts. Humans are definitely capable of change...it was only 100 years or so ago a Western woman displaying her ankles was considered loose. But we are not at a stage yet where breasts can be exposed without being a talking point.
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chest nudity
I have no desire to see sloppy male OR female chests, thanks.

If you're out of shape or not well-formed of either gender, keep your shirt on if you're not at the beach or out in public. My eyes thank you.

There's a time and place for everything.
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germs
Natty, be the change you want to see. Baring your breasts is the first step towards enlightenment.
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Equallity
What an idiotic area to focus energy on equality. The first placed we should start with equality between men and woman is in the courts. When it comes to the legal system having a vagina puts you at a major advantage when it comes to legal rights especially in the civil courts.


That said the more tits in public the better IMO.
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Telegram Sam
Now watch all the perverted, insecure, middle-aged guys take photos.
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david
@Telegram, why does a guy have to be middle aged and insecure to take photos of breasts? Im not saying thats acceptable behavior, but a confident, twentysomething year old male might also wish to see a womans breasts. And if a woman is confident enough to bare them, she should accept being "admired" by the various crowdgoers. As perverted as that crowd may be.
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Bob Stanton
Of course, I'm for women going topless in public, any time, all the time :)
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@Telegram Sam
You're the one with the problem apparently. So what if women have bare breast and people like them? If bare breasts are no big deal, then they're no big deal. Nice try though. Go back to your puritan basement.
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Not only the right to go topless
But the right and the privilege to go unmolested, unleered at, and un propositioned by passing males. I'm a 50 yo male, I love breasts - I think they are beautiful in every shape and form and I can't stand my fellow males that can't treat them as beautiful scenery but can only see them as an invitation for intimate contact..,,,
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@ not only the right...
There are not enough thumbs up for your comment.
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Boo Bees
This event is LAME. If I remember correctly there were only one or two topless women in last years' march. It was a leerfest with mostly young to middle aged men hoping to get a free look and yes, a number of them were sporting cameras. There's nothing to see here folks, move along.
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Nature
I've noticed that the (young) women who take part in these demonstrations usually have attractive breasts. Coincidence?
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Jon The Mann
I agree with you totally @Bob Stanton, some women have the bodies that can go topless, but ladies, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE, if you don't have the bodies to go topless, then PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE cover up.
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M. Morrison
The lady in the video states that if politicians met with one another and ruled in the nude we would have justice and world peace. I have NEVER heard a more naive comment in my life. Also notice that the next great step forward on the path to enlightenment is full nudity. This "great thinker" at one point stressed that there is nothing sexual about full public nudity and that they did not support public sex. Using an extension of her squalid logic though, sex is completely natural, so why should there be laws against public "natural behaviour".
In a world so filled with tragedy, with so many opportunities for people to make a positive difference, it disheartens me encounter this meaningless intellectual drivel. Go make a sandwich for some hungry child, grab a hammer and nail and build something or befriend some lonely person. You are offering nothing of value to humanity this way.
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