Police and Peterborough-Nogojiwanong Pride
2022 marked the 20th anniversary of Pride Week in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong.Ptbo-Nogo Pride as an organization has shifted and evolved over those years, working to ensure that we are connected and responding to the needs of our community. Yet, our mission remains the same: to support and celebrate the 2SLGBTQIA community, to honour those who came before us, and to contribute to the resilience of our current struggle for our human rights. Our values guide the work that we do, and offer a framework for the choices we make. While these choices don’t always reflect the feelings and opinions of all individual community members, we stand firmly that our priority is to foster safety and inclusivity, while promoting anti-oppressive and anti-racist practices.
The Ptbo-Nogo Pride Week 2022 theme was “Joy & Resistance”; a poignant reminder of the origins of Pride, and the importance of creating space for Queer joy. In an attempt to align ourselves with the significance of this theme and stay true to our values, we have chosen to make a formal statement about our position on police involvement in the Pride Week Parade. At its roots, Pride is a protest. The reason it exists is because of Queer and Trans activists who organized and rebelled against targeted raids, oppression and violence at the hands of the police. The police as an institution represent systemic racism, violence, and power over marginalized communities, and to welcome uniformed police officers to march in the Pride Parade would oppose our mission and values.
Will there be police in the Pride Parade?
Probably.There are plenty of police who identify as 2SLGBTQIA, and they are welcome to march in the parade like anyone else - without their uniforms.
Will there be other police at the Pride Parade?
Yes.The Pride Parade has grown significantly over the past 20 years, and involves road closures to function safely. As a result, police presence is required at the barricades to ensure traffic management and safety. If you attend or participate in the parade, you can expect to see uniformed police on the sidelines and at intersections where traffic control is required.
We believe in the possibility that healthy, safe communities can exist with public safety measures that do not involve policing. We will continue to commit to peaceful assembly with volunteers who are trained in conflict resolution and de-escalation, and we welcome feedback from our community about ways that we can improve in promoting a safe and inclusive environment during our Pride Week events.
We will be drafting a formal policy on uniformed police in the parade in the coming months. To view our mission and values, see our website here: http://peterboroughpride.ca/2113-2/
If you have any questions please contact us at email@example.com