With Pride Toronto gearing up to kick off Pride Month on June 1, organizers have revealed a new safety campaign intended to garner support and increase awareness for those affected by hate crimes and assaults on members of the LGBT community.
The safety campaign is titled Until We’re Safe, and it’s a week-long community engagement campaign, led by 15 LGBT organizations, which will run across various social media platforms.
The Until We’re Safe website acts as the core of the campaign, where you’ll find stories from 24 community members who have been victims of homophobia and hate crimes, in addition to providing outreach resources for those needing help or support.
“If you’ve ever felt scared, threatened, vulnerable, alone or invisible, know that we are here. You have a community, that sees you, hears you and stands beside you,” said Olivia Nuamah, Executive Director of Pride Toronto in a release.
This safety campaign comes amidst alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur being charged with eight counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of several men including Selim Esen, Skandaraj Navaratnam, Andrew Kinsman, Majeed Kayhan, Soroush Mahmudi, Dean Lisowick, Kirushna Kumar Kanagaratnama, and Abdulbasir Faizi.
All eight men vanished from in or around Toronto’s Gay Village between 2010 and 2016.
New to this year’s Toronto Pride Parade is a Black March, which encourages spectators to wear black to mourn the victims murdered in and around the gay village.
Rather than ending with a sea of vibrant colours, the parade will end with a sea of black as spectators march in silence to commemorate those the LGBT community, and the city, have lost.
The 38th annual Pride Parade will take place on Sunday, June 24 and will take place from the corner of Church and Bloor streets to Yonge-Dundas Square.