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NEWS RELEASE: International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia 2013

NEWS RELEASE: International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia 2013
NEWS RELEASE: International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia 2013
May 17, 2013
NEWS RELEASE: International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia 2013

For Immediate Release

May 17, 2013
Toronto PFLAG and Egale Canada join to recognize the annual International Day Against Homophobia and Transphobia (IDAHOT) at lunch-time City Hall rainbow flag-raising/proclamation; UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon voices support in Netherlands address.

TORONTO – Toronto Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays and national LGBTQ advocacy organization, Egale Canada continue in their leadership roles today, standing in solidarity to fight for the elimination of all forms of discrimination, and the right for everyone to be treated equally and live in conditions of dignity, respect and peace.


In recognition of the ongoing battle to combat homophobic and transphobic bullying, a variety of events have been lined up to mark the significance of this annually recognized date, which included an address by United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon at a conference for IDAHOT in the Netherlands yesterday. 


“For generations, lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in all regions have been subjected to terrible violence on account of their sexual orientation and gender identity. They have been treated with contempt, derision and discrimination… made to feel anything but free and equal,” said the Secretary General.  “I am committed to raising my voice.  Along with many committed partners, we are working to elevate this struggle and draw greater attention to the specific challenges facing LGBT members of our human family.  I appreciate all who support this effort and call on others to engage.”


Today, in recognition of this year’s Canadian theme, "Fight the Homophobia Web Virus," Toronto PFLAG and Egale Canada will again join for the annual flag raising at Toronto City Hall, which welcomed Mayor Rob Ford’s reading of the official proclamation in 2012.  Confirming his warm reception last year, the Mayor’s Office has again received the invitation for the Mayor to read the official proclamation at 12:30pm today. 


“Bullying of LGBTQ individuals is still very prevalent, particularly in our schools and online, and must not be tolerated,” said Toronto PFLAG President, Irene Miller.   “We cannot get our message out alone, but by standing together to stop homophobia and transphobia, we can ensure this message is heard all across the city and indeed, around the world.”


Toronto PFLAG and Egale Canada look forward to joining all of the wonderful allies of the LGBTQ community, welcoming all who wish to attend.  Members of the media are invited to join at the top of the second level ramp outside of Toronto City Hall today.  The flag raising and proclamation will begin at 12:30pm sharp, with the entire event lasting approximately 30 minutes.  Be a part of the movement to inspire change.


Media Contact:
Bryn Hendricks, Director of Media and Public Relations

Toronto PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays)

416 875 2635

Toronto PFLAG (Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) promotes the health and well-being of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered persons, their families and friends through SUPPORT, to cope with an adverse society, and EDUCATION, to enlighten an ill-informed public in order to end discrimination and secure equal rights.  www.torontopflag.org


Egale Canada is Canada’s national lesbian, gay, bisexual and trans (LGBT) human rights organization: advancing equality, diversity, education and justice.  Egale's vision is a Canada free of homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and all other forms of discrimination so that every person can achieve their full potential, unencumbered by hatred and bias.  www.egale.ca