The following is a listing of proclamations for the current term of Council, from January to December 2021.

John Tory Mayor of Toronto - Proclamation

Be a Donor Month

April 2021

WHEREAS this month we raise awareness of the importance of organ donation. Registering to be an organ and tissue donor will save lives. One donor can potentially save eight lives.

Everyone should consider providing consent to become an organ donor and to speak to their families about organ donation, so the donor registration rate can be increased. There are more than 350 people in Toronto who are on a waiting list for an urgent organ transplant.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “Be a Donor Month” in the City of Toronto.

Dig Safe Month

April 2021

WHEREAS this month as the spring digging season begins, homeowners and contractors are reminded to contact ‘Ontario One Call’ before starting any excavation work to prevent injuries, property damage and power outages.

Underground infrastructure is located across the province and it’s crucial to locate buried cables, pipes and wires so you can dig safely.

Use the dig safe checklist and call before you dig, and wait for locates that identify the position of any underground utility lines before beginning any outdoor digging. Always respect the markings and dig with care to help ensure construction, landscape and other projects are done safely.

The City of Toronto provides programs and services to meet the public health and safety needs of the city, community and families.  Prevention, education and communication are vital to creating healthy and safe communities, workplaces, schools and homes.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “Dig Safe Month” in the City of Toronto.

Genocide Remembrance, Condemnation and Prevention Month

April 2021

WHEREAS we observe Genocide Remembrance, Condemnation and Prevention Month, to honour and remember the victims of all genocides and reflect upon the lives lost as a result of systemic violence around the world.

In 2015, the House of Commons passed a historic motion to recognize the month of April as Genocide Remembrance, Condemnation and Prevention Month. Toronto City Council declared the month in 2017 to recognize, remember and condemn genocides. It is a time to reaffirm our steadfast condemnation of the practice of genocide in order to ensure that these atrocities never happen again. Toronto is home to many people who have fled violence and genocide. We must never forget these tragic events and the legacy of trauma they leave.

We all must recognize our personal responsibility in preventing genocide and to stand up against prejudice, hate and other forms of exclusionary practices that are known precursors to crimes against humanity. One powerful precursor is the use of words to target and dehumanize groups of people, both online and in person. We must all do our part to be aware and vigilant of actions which seek to incite hatred or violence towards groups of people, which can give rise to hate crimes, in order to effectively confront that hate.

The City of Toronto is dedicated to promoting equity, human rights and safety for all residents, while working to make the world a safer and better place. While recognizing that much work needs to be done to achieve peace in the world, we recommit ourselves to protecting the human rights and dignity of all people by creating a more humane, compassionate and just society for future generations.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “Genocide Remembrance, Condemnation and Prevention Month” in the City of Toronto.

Limb Loss Awareness Month

 April 2021

WHEREAS this month, we acknowledge the many Canadians affected by an amputation or who have a limb difference. This loss is not just a physical loss, but one that can sometimes lead to spiritual and financial challenges and social isolation leading to mental health issues.

Those who have experienced a limb loss are encouraged to seek out supports and resources that address their specific needs.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “Limb Loss Awareness Month” in the City of Toronto.

National Poetry Month

April 2021

 WHEREAS each year the month of April marks National Poetry Month, a time to celebrate poets and their craft.

“Resilience” is the theme of this 23rd National Poetry Month. During this month we celebrate and reflect upon our resiliency in a time of disruption, a time that has taught us lessons of strength, resolve, equity and inclusiveness.

The power of poetry touches people’s hearts, acknowledges grief, lifts up spirits, and inspires reflection and hope. It creates connections to the past, present and future in all cultures and languages.

In 2001, the City of Toronto became the first Canadian municipality to appoint its own Poet Laureate who acts as an ambassador and advocate for poetry and the literary arts.

The City of Toronto celebrates poetry and literature and encourages citizens to read, write, speak, perform and share poetry throughout the month of April.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “National Poetry Month” in the City of Toronto.

Refugee Rights Awareness Month

April 2021

WHEREAS refugees make positive contributions to the communities in our city. The City of Toronto supports refugee settlement and integration in our city’s social, cultural, economic and political life.

Refugee Rights Awareness Month commemorates the April 4, 1985 Supreme Court ruling that acknowledges the rights of refugees to have oral hearings under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

The successful integration of refugees helps strengthen our communities and reflects the City motto: “Diversity Our Strength.”

The City of Toronto is committed to promoting fundamental human rights and enhancing the quality of life for refugees and those who are at risk of experiencing discrimination or violence.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “Refugee Rights Awareness Month” in the City of Toronto.

Sikh Heritage Month

April 2021

WHEREAS April is designated as Sikh Heritage Month to celebrate the valued social, economic, political and cultural contributions of Sikh Canadians.

April is a special time for Sikh Canadians, as the community celebrates Vaisakhi, marking the Sikh New Year and the establishment of the Sikh community.

Canada is home to a large Sikh diaspora, many who live in Toronto. Sikh Heritage Month is a time to learn about the history of this vibrant community as well as the strength of its language and culture.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the valued contributions that the diverse communities of Toronto have made to strengthen our society and contribute to our city’s motto “Diversity Our StrengthDiversity strengthens us socially, politically, culturally and economically. Toronto has become a model city where all religions, faiths and beliefs are respected and accepted.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2021 as “Sikh Heritage Month” in the City of Toronto.

Japanese Canadian Freedom Day

 April 1, 2021

WHEREAS this day marks the date more than 70 years ago when legal restrictions limiting movement of Japanese Canadians were removed. On April 1, 1949 Canadian citizens of Japanese ancestry were given the right to vote and the freedom to live anywhere in Canada.

Today is a day to acknowledge the contributions of the Japanese Canadian community to the city of Toronto while recognizing the difficult path to belonging faced by generations of Japanese Canadians.

The City of Toronto is committed to promoting fundamental human rights and is working to address all forms of discrimination and stand up against hatred, intolerance and discrimination.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 1, 2021 as “Japanese Canadian Freedom Day” in the City of Toronto.

Saint John Paul II Day

April 2, 2021

WHEREAS each year on April 2, on the anniversary of his passing, we honour the memory of Pope John Paul II, who was canonized as a Saint nine years after his passing.

Born Karol Józef Wojtyła, Saint John Paul II was named the 264th Pope of the Catholic faith and was head of the Catholic Church from 1978 until his passing in 2005. He was officially canonized as a Saint in the Catholic Church on April 27, 2014.

Saint John Paul II remains a source of inspiration to many. His message of faith and peace was spread globally. He visited 129 countries during his papacy. His last visit to Canada was in 2002 for the 17th World Youth Day, after Toronto was chosen as the host city for the spiritual festival. More than 800,000 youth from all over the world attended the event that had a lasting impact on our city.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2, 2021 as “Saint John Paul II Day” in the City of Toronto.

World Autism Awareness Day

April 2, 2021

WHEREAS World Autism Awareness Day raises awareness about people living with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and the challenges they face every day.

ASD is a developmental disorder that appears in early childhood and it describes a group of conditions that affects communication, social interactions and repetitive behaviours.

World Autism Awareness Day also celebrates the unique talents of those with autism, and the challenges they live with and the importance of understanding these challenges.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 2, 2021 as “World Autism Awareness Day” in the City of Toronto.

Family Caregiver Day

April 6, 2021

WHEREAS this day recognizes and honours family caregivers who provide unpaid and compassionate care to people with disabilities, health conditions or age related challenges.

Family caregivers assume challenging roles to ensure and protect the quality of life for the person they care for while balancing their personal and work lives and other commitments. They must respond to changing situations throughout their journey of caring for others. The support they provide often impacts a caregiver’s life physically, emotionally and socially.

During the COVID-19 pandemic caregivers have played a critical role in providing essential services and compassionate care, for family and friends. The compassion, commitment and resilience of family caregivers have contributed to the health, safety and well-being of loved ones during this challenging time.

The City of Toronto recognizes the important roles that family caregivers play and the many contributions they make to our city and to society as a whole. Today is a day to raise awareness of the incredibly vital social and economic contributions made by caregivers and to ensure that the city continues to work with the community to provide support and assistance.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 6, 2021 as “Family Caregiver Day” in the City of Toronto.

Global Meetings Industry Day

April 8, 2021

WHEREAS Global Meetings Industry Day highlights the value that business meetings, exhibitions, conferences, conventions and tradeshows bring to the local community.

COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on the meetings industry, dramatically altering how we come together to host events. In Toronto the pandemic’s toll has resulted in the cancellation of 463 events, the loss of 380,000 attendees, and $833 million dollars in lost economic impact for the city.

The pandemic has affected the many people who work in the meetings industry. Event cancellations have meant workers who support the industry have lost jobs and venues hosting conferences have lost business.

The City of Toronto recognizes the valuable role that the meetings industry plays in the economic and social health of our city. We are committed to ensuring a full and strong economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. A healthy meetings industry is an absolutely essential part of the economic recovery in our city, province and across the country.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim April 8, 2021 as “Global Meetings Industry Day” in the City of Toronto.

John Tory Mayor of Toronto - Proclamation

Bangladeshi Heritage Month

March 2021

WHEREAS Bangladeshi Heritage Month acknowledges the significant contributions of the Bangladeshi community to the growth and prosperity of Toronto.

This month marks the 50th anniversary of Bangladesh’s Independence Day on March 26 and celebrates the rich culture and heritage of the Bangladeshi people and the important role the community plays in strengthening the cultural, social and economic fabric of our city.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the valued contributions that the diverse communities in Toronto make to strengthen our society and contribute to our city’s motto “Diversity Our Strength”.  Diversity strengthens us socially, politically, culturally and economically.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 2021 as “Bangladeshi Heritage Month” in the City of Toronto.

Easter Seals Month

March 2021

WHEREAS Easter Seals is committed to enhancing the quality of life, well-being and independence of children and youth with physical disabilities through programs and services that promote access, inclusion and opportunity.

One in five Canadians, aged 15 and over are living with some form of disability that affects their level of freedom, participation, independence and quality of life.

Easter Seals supports and provides families with funding for essential mobility and accessibility equipment so that children can enjoy greater participation, independence and freedom while promoting self-esteem and pride. Although in-person camps have been suspended due to the pandemic, virtual camp sessions continue when possible.

The City of Toronto recognizes the significant contributions of charities and organizations dedicated to helping those in need in our community, and those who help to raise awareness of a cause. It is through active community work, fundraising and caring that we build a caring city.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 2021 as “Easter Seals Month” in the City of Toronto.

Fraud Prevention Month

March 2021

WHEREAS fraud detection and reporting are important to any system of fraud prevention and deterrence.

Fraud Prevention Month in an annual public awareness campaign that seeks to help people recognize, prevent and report fraud. Fraud awareness and recognition are vital due to the large role the digital economy plays in our lives.

The City’s Fraud and Waste Hotline, operated by the Auditor General’s Office, is an independent resource that enhances awareness regarding the prevention and detection of fraud.

The City of Toronto is committed to integrity and accountability in its business operations, in service delivery to the public and within the Toronto Public Service.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 2021 as “Fraud Prevention Month” in the City of Toronto.

Nutrition Month

March 2021

WHEREAS Nutrition Month recognizes and acknowledges the work of dietitians and other healthcare professionals who work to keep us healthy.

Eating nutritious, balanced, and healthy meals can have many positive impacts. A good diet can help manage underlying health conditions like diabetes and high blood pressure or cholesterol. It can also help prevent disease, stimulate brain function and improve overall mental and physical health.

Dietitians are a reliable source for nutrition and other food-related information that can be tailored to meet all unique and specific needs. Nutrition Month is a time to assess our nutritional habits and consult dietitians and other healthcare professionals for professional advice.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about how to be healthy. Through education and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 2021 as “Nutrition Month” in the City of Toronto.

Black Mental Health Week

March 1 – 5, 2021

WHEREAS, anti-Black racism has detrimental impacts on the mental health and well-being of all Torontonians and in particular Black residents. Black Mental Health Week presents an opportunity to reflect on the systemic nature of anti-Black racism on the lives of Black Torontonians and the collective efforts needed to combat it.

The legacy of anti-Black racism lies in the current social, economic and political marginalization of Torontonians of African descent. The pandemic has not only heightened the disproportionate impacts COVID-19 has had on Black residents but it also demonstrates the desire from communities to increase awareness and initiate action to address the impacts of anti-Black racism on mental health and social well-being.

It is a time to confront the effects of anti-Black racism on mental health and to recognize it is a year round problem for Black Torontonians. Torontonians can get involved by not staying silent on the anti-Black racism that exists in public sectors including health, education, justice, employment, housing and child welfare, negatively affecting the lives of over 400,000 people of African descent who call Toronto home. It is a call to action to respond to the gaps in our health systems and the lack of culturally appropriate supports that address the mental health needs of Black communities. Existing stereotypes in our healthcare system often lead to increased rates of misdiagnosis and under-treatment.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about mental health and the need to confront anti-Black racism. The City of Toronto has developed the Toronto Action Plan to Confront Anti-Black Racism to eliminate barriers and to ensure systemic changes are made to eradicate anti-Black racism and help create a culture that values inclusion, opposes racism and intolerance and prioritizes the well-being and advancement of Black Torontonians. During the pandemic, the City launched its Black Community COVID-19 Response Plan in an effort to provide services and supports focused on the unique needs of Black Torontonians. While this is a positive step forward, our work will ensure that all residents will continue to have the necessary support.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 1- 5, 2021 as “Black Mental Health Week” in the City of Toronto.

City of Toronto Day

March 6, 2021

WHEREAS the City of Toronto is the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee and the Wendat peoples and is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples. We also acknowledge that Toronto is covered by Treaty 13 with the Mississaugas of the Credit.

Today we mark the date that the City of Toronto was officially incorporated as the former town of York in 1834. Since its incorporation, Toronto has grown from a small town with a population of less than 10,000 people to Canada’s largest city. Toronto is home to more than 2.9 million people whose diversity and experiences make our city one of the most culturally diverse and livable cities around the world.

Toronto is a place where multiculturalism and diversity thrive. Toronto’s motto “Diversity Our Strength” demonstrates our residents’ willingness to embrace differences and learn about all cultures. We are a city that works to live in harmony by raising awareness and learning about all those who call our city home. We are proud of our global reputation for being a friendly, diverse, culturally rich city filled with vibrant neighbourhoods and a unique culture that make Toronto a great place to live and visit.

This year’s celebrations will be different due to the pandemic but the underlying values and beliefs of Torontonians remains strong. We have always been a city filled with caring people who support one another. This past year has been no different. Although we cannot gather in person, we will honour today and the great city that we live in by recognizing the strength and resiliency of our city and its people. COVID-19 has tested us and I am confident that we will get out of this pandemic stronger and better. The Toronto spirit will remain strong and present as we rebuild our city together.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 6, 2021 as “City of Toronto Day” in the City of Toronto.

International Women’s Day

March 8, 2021

WHEREAS on International Women’s Day we recognize the social, economic, cultural and political accomplishments of women, and the progress that has been made in working towards gender equality. We also acknowledge the ongoing challenges and barriers women continue to experience, and reflect on the steps needed for advancing women’s equality in our city and around the globe.

The theme for International Women’s Day in 2021 is ‘Choose to Challenge’, to highlight that a challenged world is an alert world and from challenge comes change. It calls on all of us to challenge the gender inequities and biases in our communities, workplaces, cities and globally.

The COVID-19 pandemic is having severe repercussions on women who are facing the impact of earning less, working in insecure jobs, and having to take care of children and older parents or relatives. These impacts are compounded for Indigenous, Black, racialized, immigrant and low-income women, women living with disabilities and single parents. Some also face the repercussions of gender-based violence as they follow stay at home orders, which makes supports harder to access.

On this day, we remember the ongoing struggle for gender equality in compensation, representation in business and politics, education, and health, while also celebrating improvements and progress. It is also a day to celebrate women, who, through their acts of courage and determination, have played extraordinary roles in creating positive change in their communities.

The City of Toronto recognizes there is still work that needs to be done to achieve gender equity and gender equality. Through legislation, policies, programs and services, we will continue to promote equity, human rights and safety for our employees and residents, and eliminate barriers to full participation in society. The City has created a new and permanent Gender Equity Unit in order to advance this important work.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council do hereby proclaim March 8, 2021 as “International Women’s Day” in the City of Toronto.

Mauritius Cultural Day

March 12, 2021

WHEREAS on this day in 1968 Mauritius gained independence and 24 years later was proclaimed a republic within the British Commonwealth.

Today we celebrate the rich culture and heritage of the Mauritian people and acknowledge their valued contributions to Toronto’s success, growth and prosperity.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the valued contributions that the multicultural communities in Toronto make to strengthen our society and contribute to our city’s motto “Diversity Our Strength”.  Diversity strengthens us socially, politically, culturally and economically.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 12, 2021 as “Mauritius Cultural Day” in the City of Toronto.

International Nowruz/Novruz Day

March 20, 2021

WHEREAS Nowruz/Novruz Day recognizes a time of renewal and rebirth to mark the arrival of spring in the northern hemisphere.

This day is celebrated by millions of people around the world and hundreds of thousands of people of different nationalities here in the City of Toronto.

Celebrated for thousands of years, this festival has a deep history and is recognized by many different cultures, each with their own unique traditions.

While this year we may not be able to celebrate with one another in-person, this day offers a time to focus on self-reflection, well-being, new beginnings, prosperity and fertility, all central themes for  Nowruz/Novruz celebrations.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the valued contributions that the diverse communities in Toronto make to strengthen our society and contribute to our city’s motto “Diversity Our Strength.” Diversity strengthens us socially, politically, culturally and economically. As one of the world’s most multicultural cities, Toronto has become a model city where all cultures are respected and accepted.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 20, 2021 as “International Nowruz/Novruz Day” in the City of Toronto.

Toronto Francophonie Week

March 20 – 27, 2021

WHEREAS this week celebrates Francophonie culture and its unique and rich history in Toronto.

Since 2001, Toronto Francophonie Week has promoted and celebrated French language and culture through a variety of programming. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, last year’s 20th anniversary celebration of Toronto Francophonie Week, was cancelled.

I am delighted that the theme for the 20th anniversary of Toronto Francophonie Week – “20 years together” – will be recognized this year instead with online programming. The week will offer virtual events to celebrate Francophone arts and culture, language and literature.  Toronto is home to more than 63, 000 members of the Francophonie community, and the French language is one of the top 15 mother languages spoken in the city.

Members of Toronto’s Francophone population are a valued part of our community and help exemplify our city’s motto – “Diversity Our Strength”. Diversity strengthens us socially, politically, culturally and economically. As one of the world’s most diverse cities, Toronto has become a model city where all cultures are respected and accepted.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 20 – 27, 2021 as “Toronto Francophonie Week” in the City of Toronto.

Semaine de la francophonie de Toronto

Du 20 au 27 mars 2021

ALORS QUE cette semaine célèbre la culture de la francophonie et son histoire unique et riche à Toronto.

Depuis 2001, la Semaine de la francophonie de Toronto a promu et célébré la langue et la culture françaises par le biais d’une variété de programmes. Malheureusement, en raison de la pandémie de COVID-19, la célébration du 20ème anniversaire de la Semaine de la francophonie de Toronto de l’an dernier a été annulée.

Je suis ravie que le thème du 20ème anniversaire de la Semaine de la francophonie de Toronto – « 20 ans ensemble » – soit plutôt souligné cette année par une programmation en ligne. Cette semaine proposera des événements virtuels pour célébrer les arts et la culture, la langue et la littérature francophones. Toronto compte plus de 63 000 membres de la communauté francophone, et la langue française est l’une des 15 langues maternelles les plus parlées dans la ville.

Les membres de la population francophone de Toronto constituent un élément précieux de notre communauté et contribuent à illustrer la devise de notre ville : « La diversité est notre force ». La diversité nous renforce socialement, politiquement, culturellement et économiquement. En tant que l’une des villes les plus diversifiées au monde, Toronto est devenue une ville modèle où toutes les cultures sont respectées et acceptées.

PAR CONSÉQUENT, ci-après, le maire John Tory, au nom du conseil municipal de Toronto, je proclame par la présente que la semaine du 20 au 27 mars 2021 sera la « Semaine de la francophonie de Toronto » dans la ville de Toronto.

Day of Remembrance for Lives Lost to COVID-19

March 21, 2021

WHEREAS today we pause to remember and reflect on the many lives lost in Toronto as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sadly more than 2,700 Toronto residents have died due to COVID-19 in the past year. As Torontonians, we must remember and reflect on the loss of life as we continue our fight against COVID-19.

We reflect on the unexpected loss of beloved family members, friends and colleagues whose lives and contributions to our communities will never be forgotten. Today we take time to remember and commit to never forgetting those whose lives were taken too soon.

The grieving and deep sense of loss, at this very difficult time in the life of our city, our province and country as well as around the world, is keenly felt by us all.

Today, while we commemorate the lives lost, we also recognize those who worked tirelessly to care for those who fell ill due to COVID-19 and who work to support those living with the loss of loved ones. Our city has deep gratitude for all the frontline and essential workers who were vital in our response to the pandemic and who continue to work throughout the pandemic to ensure our residents are protected. We must all continue to support each other as we move to a time of healing and recovery in our city.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 21, 2021 as “Day of Remembrance for Lives Lost to COVID-19” in the City of Toronto.

International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

March 21, 2021

WHEREAS this day is observed annually on the day the police in Sharpeville, South Africa, opened fire and killed 69 people and wounded many at a peaceful demonstration against apartheid “pass laws” in 1960, a system that segregated the Black population.

On this day we recognize and are guided by the United Nations Declaration on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination that affirms the need to eliminate racial discrimination in all its forms and promote the importance of respect and dignity.

We continue to hear of increased racial discrimination against BIPOC people which has resulted in violence and threats. Toronto is an inclusive city filled with diverse people from around the world. We must work together to build up our city, stand up against racial discrimination and demand better from each other. We will not tolerate any form of hatred, discrimination or violence in Toronto.

The City of Toronto works to eliminate racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance, while empowering individuals and communities to stand up against hatred and intolerance. As a city we will continue to uphold fundamental human rights and strive for a quality of life for newcomers, migrants, refugees, Indigenous peoples, people of African descent and others who are often targets of discrimination.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 21, 2021 as “International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination” in the City of Toronto.

World Down Syndrome Day

March 21, 2021

WHEREAS today on World Down Syndrome Day we recognize and raise awareness of those living with Down Syndrome, caused by a chromosome condition that creates special physical and intellectual challenges.

About one in 800 babies are born with Down Syndrome, a condition that causes varying degrees of challenges and medical issues. With family and community support, research and fundraising people with Down Syndrome can lead rich lives and make a wide range of contributions. Across the country and in our city a number of organizations work to support those with Down Syndrome.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about conditions that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 21, 2021 as “Down Syndrome Awareness Day” in the City of Toronto.

Agnes Macphail Day

March 24, 2021

WHEREAS this year marks the 100th anniversary of the election of the first female Member of Parliament, Agnes Macphail, on December 6, 1921.

Agnes Macphail won her seat in the first election where women had the right to run as candidates. This milestone achievement has been designated an anniversary of significance by the Government of Canada.

She represented Grey South East in the House of Commons until 1940 and returned to elected life in 1943, when she was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to represent the riding of York East. She was responsible for initiating Ontario’s first equal-pay legislation to obtain fair pay for women.

Agnes Macphail was a role model who wanted to see more women in politics. She was recognized for her commitment to advocating for women’s rights, fairness for seniors, prison reform, peace and disarmament, housing, health care and education. She also supported farmers and industrial workers.

In 1994, the former Borough of East York first recognized her contributions in furthering the role of women in Canadian politics and in society, as well as her local and global achievements. This recognition has continued through the annual Agnes Macphail Award.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 24, 2021 as “Agnes Macphail Day” in the City of Toronto.

World Tuberculosis (TB) Day

March 24, 2021

WHEREAS today marks World Tuberculosis Day, a condition commonly referred to as TB.

This airborne bacterial infection, that primarily affects the lungs, is one of the top 10 causes of death around the world. Every year on March 24, the World Health Organization recognizes World Tuberculosis Day. This year’s theme is World TB Day: “The Clock is Ticking,” a reminder that we must continue efforts to help stop the spread of TB.

TB is preventable, treatable and curable. The City offers a variety of resources through its Toronto Public Health Tuberculosis Program that works with health professionals and the community to reduce the impact of TB.

Today is a day to commemorate and to raise public awareness about the health, social and economic consequences of TB and to increase efforts to end TB globally.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 24, 2021 as “World Tuberculosis (TB) Day” in the City of Toronto.

International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade

March 25, 2021

WHEREAS International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade is observed around the world on March 25 to honour and remember those who suffered and died from a cruel system of enslavement.  This year’s theme “Ending Slavery’s Legacy of Racism: A Global Imperative for Justice” underlines the importance of educating people about the history of the transatlantic slave trade and acknowledging slavery’s impact on the modern world. It emphasizes the need to take action to address its long-lasting effects, while recognizing the mobilizing global movement that seeks to put an end to injustices rooted in the slave trade.

For more than 400 years, more than 15 million men, women, and children of African descent were victimized in a time that marks one of the most catastrophic chapters in human history.

Enslavement of people of African descent occurred for over 200 years, until it was abolished in 1834 in the British Empire. It is estimated that thousands of enslaved people escaped to Canada via the Underground Railroad, many settling in Ontario.

Marking this date provides an opportunity to honour and remember people of African descent who suffered and died from the atrocities of this enslavement. It is a way to commit to confronting and ending its legacy of anti-Black racism and prejudice that made this unjust system of suffering possible.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 25, 2021 as “International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade” in the City of Toronto.

International Decade for People of African Descent
2015 to 2024

WHEREAS the United Nations officially proclaimed 2015 to 2024 as the International Decade for People of African Descent under the theme “People of African Descent: recognition, justice and development” to prioritize the promotion and protection of the human rights of people of African descent who were victims of slavery, the slave trade and colonialism and who continue to endure systemic racism and discrimination.

This International Decade encourages Canada and other member states of the United Nations to take action towards affirming the diverse heritage, culture and contributions of people of African descent or origin.

The City of Toronto joins the Government of Canada and the Province of Ontario in recognizing this International Decade to promote respect, protection and fulfilment of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of people of African descent, as recognized in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

The City of Toronto is at the forefront of efforts to eliminate anti-Black racism and all forms of discrimination, while supporting individuals and communities to stand up against hatred, intolerance and systemic discrimination.

The City of Toronto has developed the Toronto Action Plan to Confront Anti-Black Racism to eliminate barriers and ensure systemic changes are made to eradicate anti-Black racism in City services, planning, policies and spaces. The City’s efforts coincide with the United Nations’ declaration of the International Decade for People of African Descent from 2015 – 2024.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about and driving actions to amplify the Decade.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim the City of Toronto’s recognition of the “International Decade for People of African Descent” in the City of Toronto.

Purple Day for Epilepsy

March 26, 2021

WHEREAS Purple Day for Epilepsy raises awareness about what it is like to live with epilepsy, a neurological condition that that causes recurring seizures.

Purple Day began in 2008 when young a Canadian advocate set out to shed light on the condition to let others know that they are not alone. Today, Purple Day for Epilepsy has grown into a global call to action and is now officially recognized in Canada and many countries around the world.

On this day, I encourage everyone to show their support to people living with epilepsy by learning about the condition and its effects and by raising awareness by wearing purple today.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 26, 2021 as “Purple Day for Epilepsy” in the City of Toronto.

International Transgender Day of Visibility

March 31, 2021

WHEREAS this day is dedicated to celebrating transgender people and raising awareness of discrimination faced by transgender people around the world.

The day celebrates and recognizes the contributions that transgender people make to society. It is also an opportunity to take action to change biases people may hold toward transgender people. More work needs to be done in addressing the discrimination, violence and challenges transgender people often face. These include lower income levels and underemployment as well as consequences of social marginalization, such as symptoms consistent with clinical depression.

People who identify as transgender are valued residents who should always feel safe in Toronto. The City of Toronto will continue its work to address and end transphobia, and to empower individuals and communities to stand up against hatred, intolerance and discrimination.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim March 31, 2021 as “International Transgender Day of Visibility” in the City of Toronto.

John Tory Mayor of Toronto - Proclamation

Black History Month

February 2021

WHEREAS Toronto became the first municipality in Canada to proclaim Black History Month in 1979 to honour the legacy of Black Canadians, past and present.

During Black History Month we commemorate, celebrate and recognize the achievements of Canadians of African descent and recognize their rights to equal opportunity and freedom from discrimination in Canada.

The City of Toronto has developed the Toronto Action Plan to Confront Anti-Black Racism to eliminate barriers and to ensure systemic changes are made to eradicate anti-Black racism and help create a culture that values inclusion, opposes racism and intolerance and prioritizes the well-being and advancement of Black Torontonians.

The City’s efforts coincide with the United Nations’ declaration of the International Decade for People of African Descent from 2015 – 2024. This International Decade encourages Canada and other countries to take action to protect and promote the human rights of people of African descent, and to recognize the invaluable contributions that people of African descent or origin have contributed to communities worldwide, including Toronto.

Black History Month is our history and this is a month in which we learn of both great accomplishment and trauma, both of which are important for all of us to understand. That understanding and a commitment to act make us stronger and better as a city.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 2021 as “Black History Month” in the City of Toronto.

World Interfaith Harmony Week

February 1 – 7, 2021

WHEREAS in 2010, the United Nations proclaimed World Interfaith Harmony Week as a way to promote a culture of peace where people live in harmony with each other regardless of their faith.

World Interfaith Harmony Week underlines the need for tolerance, respect and understanding of all religions and encourages goodwill towards all people.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the valued contributions that the interfaith communities in Toronto make to strengthen our society and contribute to our city’s motto “Diversity Our Strength”.

Toronto being one of the most diverse cities in the world has become a model city where all religions, faiths and beliefs are respected and accepted.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 1 – 7, 2021 as “World Interfaith Harmony Week” in the City of Toronto.

Toque Tuesday

February 2, 2021

WHEREAS the annual Toque Tuesday campaign raises funds in support of those experiencing homelessness.

Since 1997 Toque Tuesday has raised millions of dollars across Canada – including Toronto – to help support long-term solutions to homelessness.

This year Toque Tuesday will shift to a virtual format as the pandemic has limited the ability to host in-person gatherings for the campaign. Agencies across Canada will be raising funds and awareness for homelessness through various social platforms.

COVID-19 has had a tremendous impact on those experiencing homelessness and those who work to support them. Providing support to people experiencing homelessness is a key priority for the City and I encourage everyone to support Toque Tuesday and the programs it supports by taking part in this campaign, aimed at ensuring that everyone stays warm, healthy and safe this winter.

The City of Toronto recognizes the significant contributions of organizations and support workers who work to end homelessness. It is through active community work, fundraising and caring that we build a more compassionate and livable city.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 2, 2021 as “Toque Tuesday” in the City of Toronto.

Bob Marley Day

February 6, 2021

WHEREAS each year on February 6, we honour the legacy of Robert (Bob) Nesta Marley, an iconic and influential musician, advocate for human rights and international ambassador of peace.

Through the power of his songs, Bob Marley became one of the greatest ambassadors of peace around the world.

With his positive attitude and demeanor, he used his music to promote tolerance, love and peace among people. Bob Marley always tried to use his influence to help tear down the walls of apartheid and promote unity, culture and world peace both at home in Jamaica and internationally, with songs like One Love and Africa Unite. Today, his music continues to inspire and uplift people throughout the world as he has become an iconic musician that has impacted the lives of many.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 6, 2021 as “Bob Marley Day” in the City of Toronto.

International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting

February 6, 2021

WHEREAS Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) is the practice of intentionally altering, injuring or removing external female genitalia for non-medical purposes. FGM/C has no health benefits and is internationally recognized as a form of abuse and a violation of human rights.

FGM/C reflects deep-rooted inequality between the sexes, and constitutes an extreme form of discrimination against women and girls. It is nearly always carried out on minors and is a violation of the rights of children. Each year, more than four million women and girls are at risk of FGM/C. There are approximately two-hundred million survivors of FGM/C globally, some of whom call Toronto home. Performing FGM/C is a criminal offence in Canada.

It is vitally important to raise awareness in order to fully understand how FGM/C affects women and girls around the world. FGM/C can cause severe long-term problems with a girl or woman’s physical, mental, and sexual health. We must come together to condemn this practice and provide support to survivors.

The City of Toronto is committed to promoting fundamental human rights for everyone and those who are at risk of experiencing discrimination or violence.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 6, 2021 as “International Day of Zero Tolerance for Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting” in the City of Toronto.

International Clash Day

February 7, 2021

WHEREAS, The Clash has left an enduring mark on music around the world that is still felt today, inspiring generations of local musicians and music lovers.

International Clash Day has been globally recognized since 2013 by many cities and around the world. The day marks band’s pioneering sound, which blended elements of rock, punk, reggae, ska, and dub music, mixed with an unapologetic social consciousness that was anti-establishment, anti-racist and anti-violence.

The British rockers – Joe Strummer, Mick Jones, Paul Simonon and Nicky “Topper” Headon – left an incredible legacy that shaped an entire musical genre and influenced countless artists throughout the decades.

In the late 70’s and early 80’s, The Clash left their mark on Toronto, playing concerts at the O’Keefe Centre, the Rex-Danforth Theatre and the CNE Bandshell.

Toronto is a city that values and supports musicians and music communities. Music is a defining element of Toronto’s civic identity, and we celebrate the influence of all genres and all those who birth new sounds through their talent and creative expression.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 7, 2021 as “International Clash Day” in the City of Toronto.

The Weeknd Day

February 7, 2021

WHEREAS The Weeknd is a multiple Grammy Award-winning singer, songwriter and record producer, hailing from Toronto, who has quickly become one of the world’s most popular musicians with over 75 million records sold world-wide and the #1 and #2 R&B streaming albums in history.

This Sunday – on Super Bowl Sunday – we celebrate The Weeknd as he becomes the first Canadian to headline a solo halftime show and only the third Canadian ever to perform live at one of the world’s most watched events. Millions of people will be watching him and cheering him on but we know Scarborough, a community he continues to support, will be cheering the loudest!

The Weeknd has become a global superstar known for his unmistakable vocals and songwriting, seamlessly blending Pop, R&B, and Hip Hop influences filtered through his unique production style.

The Weeknd earned his first Grammy Award in 2015 for Best R&B Performance for his song “Earned It,” which also won an Academy Award. He has won 10 Juno Awards, five American Music Awards, nine Billboard Music Awards, two Guinness World Records and the MTV Video Music Award for Video of the Year for the song “Blinding Lights.”

Toronto is proud that one of its own, The Weeknd, has achieved such enormous popularity both here at home and on the world stage.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 7, 2021 as “The Weeknd Day” in the City of Toronto.

International Development Week

February 7 – 13, 2021

WHEREAS International Development Week raises awareness of Canada’s contributions to international cooperation while encouraging Canadians to be active, global citizens committed to achieving universal, sustainable development.

The City of Toronto recognizes the many Canadian organizations and individuals actively working towards universal sustainable development, as mentioned in the United Nations’ 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that Canada has adopted since 2015.

TransformTO, Toronto’s ambitious climate action strategy approved by Toronto City Council, lays out a set of long-term, low-carbon goals and strategies to reduce local greenhouse gas emissions and improve our health, grow our economy, and improve social equity.

A leader in addressing climate change domestically and internationally, the City of Toronto is a member of C40 Cities, which connects 96 world cities to take bold climate action, leading the way toward a healthier and more sustainable future.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 7 – 13, 2021 as “International Development Week” in the City of Toronto.

211 Day

February 11, 2021

WHEREAS residents can dial 211 to access a full range of government, health, community and social services in their communities. This free service operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week and is available by phone, web, chat, text and email.

The City of Toronto partners with 211 Central to help serve the needs of those who live and work in Toronto and other GTA regions.  This specialized service, available in over 150 languages, helps guide callers to resources that address the diverse needs of all communities.

During the pandemic 211 has played a vital role in getting support and services to residents across this city. People can call 211 for referrals to health services and mental health supports, income support and financial assistance, housing help, access to food, emergency shelter and support services for seniors and persons with disabilities. All of these programs and services have been critical in our response efforts and have ensured that vulnerable residents who need assistance are getting the help they need to get through this pandemic.

The City supports healthy communities across Toronto by partnering with and investing in services and programs that strengthen social, economic and physical conditions that impact city-wide change. 211 has been an invaluable and steadfast civic partner during the pandemic response.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 11, 2021 as “211 Day” in the City of Toronto.

February 13, 2021

Wear Red Canada Day

WHEREAS this day is marked annually across Canada to raise awareness about women’s cardiovascular health.

Heart disease is the leading cause of premature death in Canadian women. Globally, cardiovascular diseases affect one out of three women.

The diagnosis and treatment of heart disease is largely based on research in men. Heart attack symptoms in women often differ from the classic signs experienced by men.

Women are under-studied, under-diagnosed and can be under-treated.

Wear Red Canada Day reminds us to be proactive in managing heart and health wellness.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 13, 2021 as “Wear Red Canada Day” in the City of Toronto and encourage everyone to wear red on this day in support of women’s health.

I Read Canadian Day

February 17, 2021

WHEREAS I Read Canadian Day is a national day celebrating the richness and diversity of Canadian literature for young people. Residents are challenged to “read Canadian” for at least 15 minutes today and upload a picture on social media of them reading their books.

This year’s theme, #NowMoreThanEver created in response to COVID-19, emphasizes the importance of promoting stories of diverseness by BIPOC authors written in their own voices.

Readers are encouraged to immerse themselves in new books or cherished favourites by wonderful Canadian authors, illustrators and publishers who are mostly based right here in Toronto.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 17, 2021 as “I Read Canadian Day” in the City of Toronto.

International Mother Language Day

February 21, 2021

WHEREAS International Mother Language Day celebrates language diversity and multilingualism and promotes the preservation and protection of all languages spoken globally. International Mother Language Day was established in Bangladesh and marks the day when people fought for recognition of the Bangla language.

Languages, with their complex implications for identity, communication, social integration, education and development, are of strategic importance for people and one of the most powerful instruments of preserving and developing heritage.

Toronto is one of the most diverse cities in the world and continues to be a welcoming home for people of all cultures who are able to speak their mother tongue freely and peacefully.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the contributions multicultural communities make in strengthening our society and our city’s motto “Diversity Our Strength”.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 21, 2021 as “International Mother Language Day” in the City of Toronto.

National Human Trafficking Awareness Day

February 22, 2021

WHEREAS on February 22, 2007, the House of Commons made a unanimous declaration officially condemning all forms of modern day slavery in Canada and proclaimed this day to raise awareness of the magnitude of human trafficking in Canada, while working towards ending this form of human rights abuse.

Human trafficking is a generally hidden but serious crime that endangers the lives of many people around the world, including Torontonians. It is defined by the United Nations as the recruitment of people and holding them against their will through force or coercion for the purposes of exploitation.

Each one of us can play a role in recognizing its presence in our city and understanding the threat it poses to vulnerable communities, and we can work to assist victims and survivors by connecting them with local support services.

The City of Toronto is committed to supporting survivors of human trafficking and contributing to efforts in preventing human trafficking in collaboration with survivors, community partners and other levels of government.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 22, 2021 as “National Human Trafficking Awareness Day” in the City of Toronto.

Pink Shirt Day

February 24, 2021

WHEREAS today on Pink Shirt Day, residents are encouraged to wear pink and speak out against bullying in schools, workplaces, online and at home.

The first Pink Shirt Day was inspired by an act of kindness and organized in honour of a high school student who was being bullied for wearing a pink shirt.  A group of teenagers at the same school organized a protest to speak out against the bullying by purchasing pink shirts and having fellow students wear them as a group.

Today, everyone is encouraged to practice kindness towards others and to wear pink in an effort to speak out against bullying.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 24, 2021 as “Pink Shirt Day” in the City of Toronto.

Rare Disease Day

February 28, 2021

WHEREAS Rare Disease Day raises awareness about rare diseases that affect one in 12 Canadians and their impact on patients’ lives.

It usually takes between one – five years for a rare disease to be properly diagnosed with people often facing misdiagnosis, unnecessary surgeries, social isolation, lack of treatment options and early death as a result of them.

The City of Toronto supports organizations and individuals committed to raising awareness about diseases, conditions and illnesses that affect all Canadians. Through education, fundraising and support, the health and well-being of our communities are improved.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim February 28, 2021 as “Rare Disease Day” in the City of Toronto.

John Tory Mayor of Toronto - Proclamation

Tamil Heritage Month

January 2021

WHEREAS this month provides Canadians with an opportunity to celebrate the contributions of Tamil Canadians to Canada’s social, economic, political and cultural fabric.

Canada is home to a large Tamil diaspora which provides us with a platform to learn about the history of this community as well as the strength of their language and culture.

The City of Toronto acknowledges the valued contributions that the multicultural communities of Toronto have made to strengthen our society and contribute to our city’s motto “Diversity Our Strength”.  Diversity strengthens us socially, politically, culturally and economically, and as one of the world’s most multicultural cities, Toronto has become a model city where all religions, faiths and beliefs are respected and accepted.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 2021 as “Tamil Heritage Month” in the City of Toronto.

Toronto Crime Stoppers Month

 January 2021

WHEREAS Toronto Crime Stoppers was founded in 1984 as a partnership between the police, the media and the community, where the public could anonymously submit information about a crime or the identity of a criminal to help stop crime in our city.

Community reward program initiatives have replaced the individual cash rewards that were once issued to people whose tips led to solving a crime. The Toronto Crime Stoppers’ Crime Prevention Through Community Engagement initiatives now help put money back into communities and community safety programs, in an effort to work towards a crime-free Toronto.

Toronto Police assigned to Crime Stoppers also participate in community events and work in schools to reach vulnerable youth and speak on topics such as bullying and social media awareness.

Toronto Crime Stoppers has proven to be a resounding success. In 2019, it received tips that led to 126 arrests and 463 charges laid.

As one of the safest cities in the world, the City of Toronto is committed to fostering community safety and the well-being of its residents by investing in the prevention of crime through social development, community partnerships and programs, which are all key components for maintaining safe and healthy neighbourhoods.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 2021 as “Toronto Crime Stoppers Month” in the City of Toronto.

Martin Luther King Jr. Day

January 18, 2021

WHEREAS Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was a Baptist minister and social activist who became the universally respected leader of the movement to end legal segregation of African Americans in the U.S. He was committed to ending racial segregation and discrimination through nonviolent means such as sit-ins and protests.

He achieved great victories in his lifetime including making discrimination illegal in public facilities and employment and helping to remove legal barriers that made it difficult for African Americans to vote. In 1964, at the age of 35, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. became the youngest man ever to receive the Nobel Peace Prize.

On the 35th anniversary of this day first being proclaimed, the residents of Toronto remember and honour the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and reaffirm a commitment to the basic principles of human rights, equality and justice for all and reaffirm as well their determination to fight racism and discrimination wherever it exists in our city.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 18, 2021 as “Martin Luther King Jr. Day” in the City of Toronto.

Lincoln Alexander Day

January 21, 2021

WHEREAS today we pay tribute to Ontario’s 24th Lieutenant Governor, Lincoln Alexander, a trail-blazer and pioneer in the political realm, who was known for his leadership and his commitment in the fight for equality and the fight against discrimination.

Mr. Alexander grew up during a time when there were limited opportunities for Black Canadians. After meeting role models with great careers in Harlem where he lived as a teenager, he resolved to have high career aspirations for himself. In 1949, he earned a BA from McMaster University followed by a law degree from Osgoode Hall Law School in 1953.

On June 25, 1968, he was elected as a Member of Parliament for Hamilton West, becoming Canada’s first black MP elected to the House of Commons. He was re-elected four times, serving as an MP until 1985. In 1979, he was appointed Minister of Labour, becoming the first black Canadian to serve in Cabinet. Mr. Alexander readily spoke out against discrimination due to race, creed or colour.

On September 24, 1985, Mr. Alexander was appointed Ontario’s 24th Lieutenant Governor. He was the first Black Canadian to be appointed to a vice-regal position in Canada, a post he held with great respect and pride. His mandate was to fight racism, advance the cause of youth and advocate for seniors. He visited hundreds of schools and communities across the province and attended thousands of events. He was one of the most highly respected and admired people to ever hold the position and had great affection for the people of Ontario.

Linc, as he was commonly known, will be remembered for fighting for equal rights for all people, for helping to change attitudes and greatly for contributing to inclusiveness and the fight against racism and discrimination in our city, our province and our country.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 21, 2021 as “Lincoln Alexander Day” in the City of Toronto.

Emergency Shelter and Homelessness Service Worker Appreciation Week

January 25 – 31, 2021

WHEREAS this week recognizes emergency shelter workers and homelessness service workers and the essential role they play in caring
for those in need.

Emergency shelter workers and homelessness service workers compassionately work to collectively deliver Toronto’s 24-hour homelessness services, including shelters, 24-hour respite sites, drop-ins and the temporary shelters and hotels opened as part of the City’s COVID-19 response. They also work to provide essential support to those living outside.

Thousands of dedicated workers deliver services to individuals living outside and at over 100 emergency shelter programs that operate around the clock, seven days a week. These programs provide critical supports for vulnerable residents in our city.

During the pandemic, our emergency shelter and homelessness service workers have played a vital role in our City’s response to COVID-19 and have helped ensure that vulnerable populations in our city are being cared for during a time of great need. I want to thank all of the emergency shelter workers and homelessness services workers in our city who have been on the frontlines during the COVID-19 pandemic. They are an important part of the efforts made thus far in helping Toronto residents throughout the pandemic. This week is an opportunity to honour their dedication and commitment to serving vulnerable homeless populations each day.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 25 – 31, 2021 as “Emergency Shelter and Homelessness Service Worker Appreciation Week” in the City of Toronto.

International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust

January 27, 2021

WHEREAS on this day, in 1945, Soviet troops liberated the Nazi Extermination Camp Auschwitz-Birkenau, which exposed the atrocities and genocide that took place there. Today, on the 76th anniversary of the liberation, we remember and honour all victims of the Holocaust, who suffered immeasurable trauma and died at the hands of Nazi occupiers, as well as the survivors who bear the lasting scars of that same trauma.

In 2005, the United Nations adopted a resolution declaring January 27 as International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. As we honour the significance of this observance, it is incumbent upon all of us to identify and condemn all forms of anti-Semitism, hate and discrimination. We must also act collectively to condemn Holocaust-denial so that we may remember what took place, and stand firm in ensuring that atrocities like this never happen again.

The City of Toronto recognizes the importance of taking collective action against anti-Semitism to create a just and inclusive city. This commitment is at the forefront of efforts to eliminate hate crimes while empowering individuals and communities to stand up against hatred, intolerance and discrimination.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 27, 2021 as “International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust” in the City of Toronto.

January 29, 2021

Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia

WHEREAS today we remember the lives lost and people that were injured when a gunman walked into the Centre Culturel Islamique de Québec just after evening prayers had concluded on January 29, 2017.

The devastating attack took the lives of six Muslim worshippers. Their names were: Azzeddine Soufiane, Mamadou Tanou Barry, Khaled Belkacemi, Aboubaker Thabti, Ibrahima Barry and Abdelkrim Hassane.

In 2020, our own city was plagued with acts of violence and hate towards our beloved Muslim community. By proclaiming this day, we are not only remembering the lives lost in Quebec, but making a stand against any further form of hatred, violence or harassment against Muslims or their sacred places of prayer.

Toronto prides itself on being the most diverse city in the world that is not only inclusive for all but embracing. We will continue to live by these values and work together to eliminate any form of racism and discrimination in our city.

The City of Toronto is committed to eliminating Islamophobia, racism, xenophobia and discrimination of all kinds and continues to promote fundamental human rights and enhancing the quality of life for all those who are at risk of experiencing discrimination, hate or violence. Today, Torontonians join other Canadians to remember the victims, to condemn these acts of violence, and to reaffirm the city’s stand against discrimination of any kind including that directed at any faith or faith group.

NOW THEREFORE, I, Mayor John Tory, on behalf of Toronto City Council, do hereby proclaim January 29, 2021 as “Day of Remembrance and Action on Islamophobia” in the City of Toronto.