Yesterday my fellow MPPs and I released a new policy paper called "End Police Violence. Invest in Black, Indigenous and Racialized People’s Lives".
Between the months of April and June, eight Black or Indigenous people in Canada have died in interactions with police. Protecting Black, Indigenous and racialized lives urgently requires an unprecedented and historic shift in the way we view policing and the health and safety of our communities.
We need immediate action to:
- Overhaul police oversight, including compelling police to participate in investigations into police actions, and allowing unpaid suspensions
- Demilitarize police forces by diverting spending on military-grade hardware, including tear gas and assault rifles, into community services. Tear gas has been banned in war zones by the Chemical Weapons Convention since 1997.
- End carding and destroy data collected through this unconstitutional practice
- Transfer responsibility to, and investing in, alternative first responders to respond to mental health, addictions, homelessness and school discipline issues
- Give elected representatives the support and power to determine how policing budgets are spent
- Invest heavily in programs and supports that address the social and economic factors that influence people’s health
This policy paper is just the start of important conversations we need to keep having on how to address anti-Black and anti-Indigenous racism in our communities.
This week also marks the culmination of Pride Month!
Even though we are apart physically, we can come together virtually for the AIDS Vigil (tonight!), the Trans March, Dyke March, and the Pride Parade, along with so many others.
This Week’s Virtual Toronto Pride Events:
Visit PrideToronto.com/virtualpride at the time of the event to participate and see full event lists!
- AIDS Vigil — Tuesday, June 23rd, 9-10 p.m.
- Trans March — Friday, June 26th, 1-3 p.m.
- Dyke March — Saturday, June 27th, 11 a.m. -12:30 p.m.
- Drag Hour — Saturday, June 27th, 8-9 p.m.
- Pride Parade — Sunday, June 28th, 2-4:30 p.m.
- Blockorama - Curated by Blackness Yes! — Sunday June 28th, 8 p.m. - late
Tomorrow, Wednesday, June 24th at 8:30 a.m., I am hosting a press conference about Bill 184. I am very concerned about this Bill's ramifications for tenants, especially those who have fallen behind on their rent by no fault of their own, during the COVID-19 crisis.
You can join me live on my Facebook page for the event tomorrow morning at 8:30 a.m. - see you there!
Wishing you a healthy and fabulous Pride,