November 8, 1946, Ms. Desmond was arrested for sitting in the “white” lower section of the Roseland Theatre instead of the designated balcony area. She was convicted for an obscure tax offense related to the purchase price of the ticket.
Ms. Viola Desmond became an icon in Canada’s Civil Rights Movement.
In Halifax Nova Scotia the Lt.-Gov. Mayann Francis formerly apologized and pardoned Ms. Viola Desmond. A free pardon recognises Ms. Desmond’s innocence. Ms. Desmond passed away in 1965 but her sister attended the ceremony.
It was the right thing to do – long overdue – but the right thing.