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Toronto Politicians Back Continued Funding for City's Pride Parade

One councillor says the city should pull funding unless uniformed cops are allowed to march.
Source: Michael Hudson/The Canadian Press

The organization behind Toronto's massive Pride parade should not be penalized for excluding uniformed police officers, a city committee ruled on Monday as it voted to continue backing municipal funding for the event.

The issue has been thrust onto the city agenda by city councillor John Campbell, who keeps musing about putting forth a motion that would deny an annual grant to Pride. The Toronto Police Association has presented the same request to the mayor's office on behalf of a group of LGBT officers.

Supporters say that pulling the funding — $260,000 — would serve as a devastating blow to Pride's ability to hold its annual celebration, one of the largest in the world.

Mayor John Tory said in a statement that he supports continuing to fund Pride, even though he believes police officers should be welcomed.

"We celebrate Pride, we appreciate Pride, we love Pride in this city. It has great benefits to our city: economic, otherwise and social," said committee chair Michael Thompson, adding that both sides should be given the time to come to a resolution for next year's parade.

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