Toronto: The City of Toronto has raised Rainbow and Transgender flags at City Hall for Pride Month.
Mayor John Tory proclaimed June as Pride Month at a flag-raising ceremony held virtually and featuring pre-recorded messages from Mayor Tory, Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam (Toronto Centre), Sherwin Modeste, Executive Director of Pride Toronto, and Grant Gonzales and Yuri Hernandez, Pride Toronto Board of Directors Co-Chairs.
After the Rainbow and Transgender flags are raised on the courtesy flagpole, following conversations with Pride Toronto, they were immediately lowered to half-mast in memory of the 215 children whose bodies were buried at Kamloops Indian Residential School in Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation territory.
This year marks two major anniversaries for Toronto’s TwoSpirit, lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans, queer, intersex and questioning communities (2SLGBTQ+): the 40th anniversary of Pride Toronto and the 30th anniversary of the City proclaiming Pride Day. The annual Pride Festival is a vibrant celebration of Toronto’s diverse 2SLGBTQ+ communities.
While the COVID-19 pandemic means in-person celebrations are not currently possible, the City encourages residents to virtually participate in one of Toronto’s largest annual cultural events.
The 2021 festival runs from Tuesday, June 1 to Sunday, June 27, culminating in a virtual Pride Parade that honours Pride’s history, highlights Toronto talent and fosters community.
More information is available at https:// www.pridetoronto.com/. Mayor Tory said: “Although, COVID-19 has changed how we celebrate Pride, it is important to acknowledge the many contributions this community has made to our city and the continued work ahead in building an inclusive city for our 2SLGBTQ+ community. Pride events are some of our city’s most beloved moments and are a true signal of a Toronto summer.”