Prime Minister Justin Trudeau marched in Canada’s largest Pride parade today joined by other dignitaries including Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and Assembly of First Nations Chief Perry Bellegarde and more than 150 groups and organizations…and something new.
Drag performer Miss Conception is hosting a play-by-play of the parade, as it makes its way down Yonge Street. Miss Conception will be providing colour commentary and interacting with guests as the parade marches by.
Toronto’s long-running Pride festival draws huge crowds to the downtown area each year to celebrate the city’s LGBTQ community. Trudeau, became the first sitting prime minister to march in a Pride parade during last year’s event,
There will be a different spin to who will be participating in this year`s parade. Uniformed police officers will be absent from the march this year, after parade organizer `Pride Toronto barred police floats from participating earlier this year.
Organizers decided to adopt a list of demands issued by the Toronto chapter of Black Lives Matter, which included a ban on police floats decided at a meeting in January.
Black Lives Matter has argued that allowing uniformed officers at the parade could discourage marginalized communities from attending.
On the other side of the coin, parade organizers say that officers are welcome to attend the parade under a few conditions…they don’t bring their uniforms, weapons and cruisers along.
Sympathetic Toronto officers to the parade have accepted an invite to take part in the pride parade in New York City.
In a show of Police solidarity, the Gay Officers Action League of New York last month extended the invitation for Toronto officers to join uniformed members of the New York Police Department in the pride events today.
Photo credit: Google Images