TORONTO’S PRIDE PARADE
TO HONOUR ORLANDO
Pride Toronto will dedicate this year’s Pride Parade to the victims of the mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, it was announced today by the Board of Directors.
“We are shocked and saddened by this horrible act,” said Aaron GlynWilliams, Co-Chair of Pride Toronto’s Board of Directors. “By dedicating the pinnacle of Toronto’s Pride Month celebration to our brothers and sisters in Orlando, we are telling the world that we will not be silenced or intimidated. We will not respond to hate with hate. We will mourn and hold these beautiful family members in our hearts, as we continue to fight violence and discrimination against our community.”
On Sunday, July 3 at 2PM, the Pride Parade will begin with a moment of silence and a reading of the names of the 49 people killed and the 53 people injured in Orlando by a gunman at a popular gay club in the early hours of June 12.
Pride Toronto’s Board of Directors extends sincere condolences to the Orlando shooting victims’ families, friends and loved ones. Pride Toronto is also thankful for the support expressed by leaders in the Muslim community, who have loudly condemned the vicious attack at Pulse as a horrific contravention of the Islamic values of respect, tolerance and non-violence.
Pride Toronto continues to work with the Toronto Police Service and the RCMP to enhance a robust security plan to ensure public safety and security throughout Pride Month activities.
“Pride has always been about creating a safe place where everyone can come together and be themselves,” said Mathieu Chantelois, Executive Director of Pride Toronto. “Now, we are so painfully aware of the importance of standing up to hate with love and celebrating the beauty, diversity and strength of our community.”
Pride Toronto invites friends, families and supporters to join in Pride Month activities and to march, rally, talk, dance, sing and work towards the day when tolerance and respect are basic rights enjoyed by everyone, everywhere.