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Bill 13 and Bill 33 Victory Party

June 17th, 2012 Comments off

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Queer Ontario would like to formally invite you to a Bills Victory Party on Saturday, June 23rd, to celebrate the passing of Ontario’s long-awaited anti-bullying and gender identity bills (Bills 13 and 33, respectively). These are two pieces of legislation that will no doubt have a tremendous effect on the way queer*, trans*, and genderqueer* individuals are perceived and treated in the education system and beyond, so what better way to rejoice in these newly-granted protections than with a party!?!

There will be light food and refreshments — and, of course, some delicious, delicious cake. So do spread the word and attend if you can!

With glee,

The Queer Ontario Steering Committee
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Queer Ontario at Toronto Pride

June 14th, 2012 Comments off

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Just like last year, Queer Ontario is planning on participating in a number of Pride-affiliated events in Toronto, plus one newly-minted unaffiliated one. Below is a list of the Toronto events we are planning to attend, with details on how we will be participating.
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If you are interested in joining us for any of them, by all means let us know! You can email Martin Otarola, the Queer Ontario Secretary, at info[at]queerontario.org to let him know which actions you are interested in. Otherwise, you are welcome to scout us out and say hello!
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We look forward to hearing back from many of you!
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Martin Otarola
Queer Ontario Secretary
On behalf of the Queer Ontario Steering Committee
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————  MARCHES  ————
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1. The unaffiliated ‘Queers for Social Justice’ Night March on Monday, June 25th

( Event details: March begins at 8:30 pm from Nathan Philips Square )

How we will participate: We will have a marching contingent, which will march
behind the Queer Ontario banner, just like we did for Stonewall TO last year.

What we will need: Individuals to make up this marching contingent.
– We will meet at Nathan Philips Square at 8:15 pm.
– Estimated time requirement is one hour (waiting time plus marching time).

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2. The Trans March on Friday, June 29th
( Event details: 6:00 pm Rally at Norman Jewison Park /  March begins at 7:30 pm )

How we will participate: We will gather a group of supporters to cheer from the
sidelines, with our banner, on the south-west corner of Church and Gloucester.

What we will need: Individuals to make up this cheering contingent.
– We will meet at the south-west corner of Church and Gloucester at 7:15 pm.
– Estimated time requirement is one hour 
(waiting time plus cheering time).
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3. The Dyke March on Saturday, June 30th
( Event details: 1:00 PM Rally at Church and Hayden Streets / March begins at 2:00 pm )

How we will participate: We will gather a group of supporters to cheer from the
sidelines, with our banner, at the north-west corner of Yonge and Wellesley.

What we will need: Individuals to make up this cheering contingent.
– We will meet at the north-west corner of Yonge and Wellesley at 1:45 pm.
– Estimated time requirement is one hour 
(waiting time plus cheering time).
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4. The Pride Parade on Sunday, July 1st
( Event details: Parade begins at 2:00 pm )

How we will participate: We will have a marching contingent, which will march behind the Queer Ontario banner with signs, just like we did last year.

What we will need: Individuals to make up this marching contingent.
– We will meet in our designated spot at 1:30 pm (spot number yet to be released)
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– Estimated time requirement is two hours (waiting time plus marching time).
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———— COMMUNITY FAIR ————

We will also be participating in The Community Fair on Sunday, July 1st
 ( From 12:00 AM to  6:00 PM)

We’ll be stationed with our trusty table, meeting and greeting new people and organizations from Toronto and beyond. We are particularly interested in getting to know what life is like for you and your significant others in your hometowns, and the issues you feel need to be addressed most urgently. So do stop by and say hi!
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Our booth will be located on Alexander Street, right next to Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.
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Update: Bill 33, Ontario’s gender identity bill, has passed!

June 13th, 2012 Comments off

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Hello Everyone,

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This is a quick and joyous note to let you know that, as of 10:04 am today, Ontario became the first province in Canada (and the second jurisdiction, after the Northwest Territories) to accept ‘gender identity’ and ‘gender expression’ as protected grounds in its Human Rights Code. That is, Toby’s Act — or Bill 33, a bill to include ‘gender identity’ and ‘gender expression’ as protected grounds in the Ontario Human Rights Code — ceremoniously passed third reading and is set to receive royal ascent in the next couple of days. (Xtra!’s story, here: http://www.xtra.ca/public/National/Ontario_passes_trans_rights_bill-12122.aspx)
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A special note of thanks goes out to NDP MPP Cheri DiNovo, Liberal MPP Yasir Naqvi, and Progressive Conservative MPP Christine Elliott for supporting and championing this fourth version of the bill. And, of course: to the Trans Lobby Group for its unfaltering activism.
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Indeed, here’s hoping that the related bills being considered federally and in Manitoba are just as successful,
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Martin Otarola

Queer Ontario Secretary
On behalf of the Queer Ontario Steering Committee
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