Bank of Canada Governor Mark Carney issued an apology for the decision to exclude a woman that appeared to be of Asian descent, according to focus group participants. Carney called the move a mistake and the design process would be reviewed.
Digital Journal reported over the weekend of the Bank of Canada removing a woman, who apparently was South Asian, looking through a microscope. The deletion was made after focus group participants raised questions about the woman’s ethnicity.
The Canadian central bank replaced the woman with another person that had a more “neutral ethnicity.” According to the report, some areas of the country were more receptive to the figure than others. Toronto study participants were “positive about the image,” while Quebec residents were “contentious.”
On Monday, Carney issued an apology on the $100 bank note and explained the “early stages of developing the themes.”
“As is always the case, in the subsequent design of the actual $100 note the designers created an original set of images from the ground up. On the actual bank note the researcher was drawn so as to not to resemble an actual person,” stated the Bank of Canada head. “Therefore, the final image did not look the same as the photoshopped image shown to the focus groups.”
Carney stated that the early design stages prior to the final design were both presented and approved by himself and Senior Deputy Governor Tiff Macklem. He added that the bank note designers attempted to avoid a certain ethnicity, but in the end it represented “only one ethnic group.”
“That was not the Bank's intention and I apologize to those who were offended - the Bank's handling of this issue did not meet the standards Canadians justifiably expect of us. We will be reviewing our design process in light of these events. Our bank notes belong to all Canadians, and the work we do at the Bank is for all Canadians.”