For over 35 years, Delta Family Resource Centre has served Low Income, Racialized, Black and Newcomer communities in Northwest Toronto. This Pride month, Delta reaffirms its commitment to building communities where all people thrive and for the first time, makes a special Statement pledging to intentionally dedicate its resources and efforts to support LGBTQIA2S+ youth and families.
We recognize that there is a lot of work to be done – both for us as an organization, and for the larger community which we serve – before our LGBTQIA2S+ members can feel fully accepted, supported, and celebrated. From work which began last year, partnerships with agencies which have done this work for many years (Rex Pride and the 519) and continuing with today’s celebration and the committed efforts of our Community team particularly Tia Dyce, Vince Rozario and Program Director Julet Allen and the FRP team and the rest of the Delta Family, we will be creating more programs to support local LGBTQIA2S+ communities.
As an organization that primarily serves Black and racialized immigrants, Delta also recognizes the impact of colonialism, anti-Blackness and racism on the discrimination currently faced by Black and racialized LGBTQIA2S+ folks. We honour the varied traditions of gender nonconformity and plurality of our cultures before the trauma of colonization. We recognize that liberation for us all must centre those who lie at the most vulnerable intersections.
Today, we also remember the valiant efforts of Black trans women in leading the fight for civil equality at Stonewall, in their communities, and in the present wave of activism affirming the importance of Black lives. We mourn those in the community who have lost jobs, safety, homes and lives due to homophobia and transphobia, in particular Black trans women- whose life expectancy continues to be as low as 35 due to the egregious violence they face in our unjust world.
We hold their hopes and dreams for a better world today, and pledge to create a safer space for LGBTQIA2S+ youth, parents, seniors and their families. Through the last year, we have invested in anti-oppression training, in understanding the needs of our LGBTQIA2S+ community members and are developing programming that addresses those needs. This is an ongoing process and we expect to continue learning and improving as we build upward. We invite all members of our community to learn, grow, and change with us to create a diverse, accepting, and supportive community for all. No matter who they love, who they are, and how they identify. Happy Pride.