The Opposition leader also joined a weeklong chorus of condemnation of Uganda’s plan to jail gender and sexual minorities.
“I wish everyone a happy Pride month, because our freedom is something in which all of us can take pride,” Poilievre told reporters in Winnipeg on Friday morning.
LGBTQ groups across North America celebrate June as Pride month, although festivals and parades happen throughout the summer in different Canadian cities.
When asked whether he’d march in any Pride parades, Poilievre instead talked about the values of choice and openness.
He said that for LGBTQ people, this includes “the freedom to marry, start a family, raise kids; freedom from bigotry and bashing; freedom to be judged by personal character, not by group identity; freedom to start a life and be judged on your merit.”
He also said Canada should continue to resettle LGBTQ refugees from abroad.
His comments come as conservative groups in the U.S. take aim at LGBTQ people, such as by blocking access to gender-affirming care for transgender people or protesting drag queen performances.
When asked about a Uganda law that allows judges to jail people for up to 10 years for same-sex relations, Poilievre called the legislation “outrageous and appalling.” He noted that former prime minister Stephen Harper’s Conservative government had been a vocal advocate for LGBTQ people.
Poilievre’s comments on the Uganda bill come days after condemnation from members of his caucus, as well as Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and numerous other MPs.