#Toronto; #TorontoPrideparade2020; #VirtualParade; #NPPC
Toronto, Jun 29 (Canadian-Media): Toronto’s weekend Pride parade 2020 was held online June 28 for the first time after several decades due to COVID-19 pandemic, media reports said.
Toronto Pride Parade 2020. Image credit: Facebook page
The inauguration of the parade was done with a ceremonial dance, followed by a greeting from Indigenous elder Laureen-Blu Waters.
The 90-minute-long event was hosted by Toronto comedian Brandon Ash-Mohammed, with an introduction of a history of Pride, featuring archival news footage of marches and protests from Toronto’s recent past.
Members of the community delivered various testimonials, and with an applause to the two main charities of Pride.
Cameos from Halsey and Alanis Morissette, Cozmic Cat, a Toronto-based DJ, Jully Black, and more was featured in the event.
Halsey and Alanis Morissette. Image credit: Video grab
This year's celebration of Sunday afternoon's Pride Toronto parade, a North American standout, not deterred by either a global pandemic or by local tech issues like occasional technical glitches, proved to be a successful substitute for the real parade.
The event was celebrated with mix of dancing, live performances, and montages with the spirit of freedom and inclusion the parade represents.
Women’s College Hospital was well represented with pictures and messages including health-care workers and hospitals.
A welcome speech was presented by Toronto's Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam and said that it was her infant son’s first Pride and that the day would come when the celebrations would be able to return to the streets.
There were Zoom flashes of sponsors, supporters and advertisers wishing participants a happy Pride.
The broadcast included people from every walk of life with many references to Black Lives Matter.
A rally at Nathan Phillips Square, known as “teach-in” event was organized by the No Pride in Policing Coalition, a group of trans people, which supported Black Lives Matter Toronto demanding half the Toronto Police Services (TPS) budget cut so that more funds can go to Black, Indigenous and other marginalized communities.
This rally was “a teachable moment for all of us, and the beginning of a larger global change to support the Black and BIPOC communities,” said Pride Toronto on its event page.
The start time of the parade was moved so as not to overlap with the “teach-in” event being held on Sunday at Nathan Phillips Square beginning at 2 p.m.
According to Pride Toronto’s annual report, around 150,000 people attended the parade last year, which made it the biggest on record.
Virtual attendance this year was less than a tenth of that: the Facebook stream of the event peaked at around 500 people, while the livestream, on twitch.tv, had around 800 viewers.
Canadian singer-songwriter Jully Black's surprise performance wrapped up the Pride parade for 2020.
When Sunday’s parade events wrapped up, Ash-Mohammed invited viewers to continue watching to witness the rally for defunding the police at Nathan Phillips Square organized by the No Pride in Policing Coalition (NPPC).
#PrideMonth; UTube; #LGBTQcommunity; #ElijahDaniel
Toronto, Jul 2 (Canadian-Media): The start of Pride Month had been harassed about multitude of issues on YouTube that the LGBT community had to deal with, media reports said.
It was only on the last day of the Pride Month that YouTube spoke directly to LGBT creators about some of the platform-related issues they had been dealing with.
First, an accusation from one trans creator that YouTube may have been showing videos about gender and sexuality, many of those coming from LGBT creators and that YouTube was allowing advertisements from anti-LGBT organizations to run across the site, specifically about gay and trans creators.
More than a month after these issues, YouTube had issued a public statement.
“We’ve taken action on the ads that violate our policies, and we are tightening our enforcement,” the company wrote in a four-part series of tweets.
“And when we hear concerns about how we’re implementing our monetization policy, we take them seriously and make improvements if needed.”
The company’s statement was vague and did not lay out a specific action plan or a deadlines for things to be improved.
After hate-based ads were magnified by a tweet from Elijah Daniel earlier in June, YouTube responded and removed the specific ad shown in his screenshots.
YouTube’s new statement in full is as follows
"It’s the last day of Pride Month and we wanted to reach out to the LGBTQ community. We’re proud of the incredible LGBTQ voices on our platform and the important role you play in the lives of young people.
But we’ve also had issues where we let the LGBTQ community down–inappropriate ads and concerns about how we’re enforcing our monetization policy.
We’re sorry and we want to do better.
We’ve taken action on the ads that violate our policies, and we are tightening our enforcement.
And when we hear concerns about how we’re implementing our monetization policy, we take them seriously and make improvements if needed.
It’s critical to us that the LGBTQ community feels safe, welcome, equal, and supported on YouTube.
Your work is incredibly powerful and we are committed to working with you to get this right.
Until more action is seen, it’s unlikely that many creators will feel satisfied or comforted by YouTube’s statement."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)
#PrideToronto, #LGBTQcommunity, #JohnTory, #TorontoCityCouncil,#CarolynnBennett, #KathleenWynne; 35YearsofHIV/AIDSActivismPride;
Toronto, June 25 (IBNS): Pride Toronto, one of the largest annual event of North America, witnessed this year thousands of marchers on Toronto's downtown core in the midst of rain turning the grey day into a rainbow of celebration.
Rainy Weather on Pride Toronto 2018 event
'The rain did not slow down another incredible Pride Parade', tweeted Toronto Mayor John Tory, who officially opened parade at 12:30 p.m at the intersection of Church Street and Bloor street which later made its way to Yonge-Dundas Square.
A not-for-profit organization, Pride Toronto, has a mission to bring people together to celebrate the history, courage and diversity of the LGBTQ.
Pride Toronto theme, this year is '35 Years of HIV/AIDS Activism Pride' and Pride Toronto 2018 is, in fact, a celebration of the progress made by the LGBTQ+ community against HIV/AIDS.
Thirty-eight years after the first community parade, Pride Toronto is still symbolic of solidarity and celebration for many in the LGBTQ community.
Later on while walking along with other marchers in the float: Toronto City Council Marches with Pride, Tory had tweeted,
"What an absolutely amazing day at the Toronto #Pride Parade! I am so proud to lead a city that is inclusive and embraces diversity."
Toronto City Council in Pride Toronto Parade 2018
The panels covered a variety of topics including Youth and HIV, Criminalization of HIV, Trans and HIV, Living and Thriving with HIV and 35 Years of AIDS Activism and included speakers from local organizations as well as local activists, many of whom are living with HIV.
In addition to this campaign, Pride Toronto is lending support to the private member’s Bill M-186, which advocates for the involvement of those with HIV/AIDS in government healthcare decisions relevant to them as well as a renewed focus on reducing stigma in the community.
Some other 2018 Pride parade participants were:
A for Asexuality & Aromanticism; Toronto Fire Services; AIDS Committee of Toronto; Toronto Public Library;Alliance for S outh Asian AIDS Prevention; LGBT Doctors and Allies; LinkedIn Pride Parade 2018 Registration; Excited Mental State; Facebook Canada; Twitter Canada; CAMH Pride Parade Walkers – Mental Health IS Heatlh; Gay Fathers of Toronto; The Toronto People With AIDS Foundation; CNIB; NDP; Liberal Party, Air Canada and many more.
Marching side by side with our entire Liberal Party family to say loud and clear that: Love is Love is Love. Happy Pride Toronto - rain or shine this is one of the best days of the year!', tweeted Bill Morneau, Member of Parliament for Toronto Centre and Canada's Minister of Finance.
"What a day at Toronto's Pride parade! Proud to join @theJagmeetSingh and our newly elected NDP MPPs alongside thousands of marchers to celebrate love and the diversity of our LGBTQ2S+ communities". Andrea Horwath, Leader of Ontario’s Official Opposition had tweeted.
Other dignitaries present in the Pride Toronto 2018 march were Carolynn Bennett, Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs and Kathleen Wynne, formerly liberal Premier of Ontario.
The Air Canada float was another amazing spectacle to watch.
The parade in recent years has been a source of controversy when police withdrew their application to march in the event because of tensions over the handling of the case of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur.
Keeping with the subdued tone at the annual celebration, as marchers paused for a moment of silence at 3 p.m. and later, during of the parade, when participants dressed in black T-shirts that read “we will not rest until we’re safe.”
Formerly known as the Black March 'we will not rest until we’re safe' had been being introduced as part of the Until We’re Safe campaign and was launched in partnership with 10 community organizations and 24 courageous community members who have shared their experiences of violence, bullying and trauma.
These moments were Pride’s way of paying tribute gay men who were the alleged victims of 66-year-old Bruce McArthur.
These tension had in the least effected the joyous faces of about 120 groups who danced their way from the city’s gay village to Yonge-Dundas Square in grandeur and waving the signature rainbow Pride flags.
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj,
#TorontoPrideMonth, #JohnTory, #RainbowandTransflags, #LoveisLoveisLovegroup, PrideToronto'sUnti We'reSafecampaign, OliviaNuamah, '#35YearsofAIDSActivism; #Torontopolice
Toronto, May June 1 (IBNS): Toronto Mayor John Tory declared the Toronto Pride Month open on Friday, and said that the event is an achievement in itself but the way ahead is not free of hurdles yet
The launching of Toronto Pride Month was celebrated on Friday with a 1,000-square-foot art installation at the city hall with Tory making the official proclamation including the rise of the Rainbow and Trans flags at Toronto city hall Friday.
The theme of the Toronto Pride Month, said Tory was '35 Years of AIDS Activism' and added that the celebration was a reflection of the unified commitment on the part of this crowd.
The celebration of the internationally recognized National Pride Toronto Month, said Tory was not an easy task to reach that far, as the community is still fighting with the government for their rights to be heard and to be treated fairly.
It was important to stand united as a community, said the Mayor and added that the work towards healing the sense of loss and frustration was a united effort.
Tory said that as long as he was the mayor, he ''would dedicatedly commit myself to this community and see that inclusivity becomes the norm of the community."
He said, "It takes time, perseverance and dedication to bring change but we can and we will bring change. We should never feel defeated, however slow the progress is."
Pride's annual parade is scheduled to go ahead at 2 p.m. on June 24, following the Dyke March on June 23 and the Trans March on June 22.
The march is part of Pride Toronto's Until We're Safe campaign launched by Toronto earlier this month, who are upset and mourning for victims of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur.
"It's still a celebration…The Bruce McArthur situation has definitely contributed to that sense of refocusing on the things" said the executive director of Pride Toronto, Olivia Nuamah had said during the earlier announcement of the launch of the festival and added that she was "pretty psyched" for the month ahead.
"We are trying to…celebrate and look at AIDS service organizations that have been the pillar of the LGBTQ+ community for 30 years and so that's really exciting," she had said.
Nuamah added that involvement of more communities and cultures,and highlights in more local art would be featured in this year's expanded programming,
Tory then thanked Olivia Nuamah, for her work and all the people working with her, be they be volunteers, staff and the board.
Tory also said that Pride Toronto was expected to become the first street festival in the city for the "drinks to go" plan is still pending.
Toronto police have withdrawn bid to march in uniform in 2018 Pride parade
'What changed was Bruce McArthur,' says Toronto Pride.
Mayor Tory concluded his speech by saying, "I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of City Council hereby proclaim June 2018 as Toronto Pride Month in the city of Toronto."
He then handed the Proclamation to the co-chairs of Pride Toronto who also spoke of all the things they are committed to doing.\
This was followed by raising of the trangender flags by John Tory.
The ceremony concluded with barbeque for the gathering.
#JohnTory, #PrideToronto, #TorontoPolice, #Toronto’sLGBT2Qcommunity, #ChiefSaunders
Toronto, Apr 4 (Canadian-Media): Toronto Mayor John Tory issued yesterday the following statement on Pride Toronto's request to Toronto Police, media reports said.
“As Mayor, the safety of all Toronto residents is a top priority.
The murders and disappearances of members of Toronto’s LGBT2Q community have deeply shaken our city and have led to many unanswered questions that need to be addressed so that trust can be restored and the difficult process of healing can continue.
The trust and partnership of all our residents is extremely important to the ongoing success of the Toronto Police Service and its officers. Today, Chief Saunders has withdrawn the service's application to participate in this year’s Pride parade so that he and the Toronto Police Service can focus on the objective of unity and restored confidence.
This is important work, and I thank the LGBT2Q community organizations who are engaged in improving relations with police at this difficult time. I'm confident that Chief Saunders will take meaningful action to address the issues that have been raised. I intend to continue to offer constructive leadership in this process whenever it will be helpful.
The annual Pride celebration remains an important time for our city, and I look forward to an event that once again reflects the vibrancy, diversity and strength of our LGBT2Q community and indeed the entire City of Toronto."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)