Less than a week after the Toronto Police had asked for permission to participate in Toronto’s gay parade, the parade organization asked them to withdraw the petition.
Last Wednesday, the Toronto police chief had asked the organizing committee for the gay pride festivities to participate in the parade. The police were not able to participate in the 2017 parade because they were declared persona non grata by the organizing committee, Pride Toronto.
The organizing committee, in a statement released Monday night, accuses the Toronto Police of botching investigations into the disappearance of seven men from Toronto’s gay community.
These disappearances are now linked to the arrest of alleged serial killer Bruce McArthur .
“The stories and life experiences of each individual were unique. But they shared the fact that the investigations related to their disappearances were insufficient, that the expertise and knowledge in the [gay] community were not used. And despite the fact that many of us have expressed concerns, we have been rejected. It has severely affected the already tense relationship of trust that our community has with the City’s security forces,” the statement said.
The release is signed by six directors of organizations that work closely or remotely with the gay community, including Pride Toronto director Olivia Nuamah.
She said this on CBC Tuesday morning: “There is still a lot, a lot, a lot of work to do before we can walk side by side [in the parade].”