City of Toronto threatens funding for Pride Toronto
As mentioned in this babble thread, Pride Toronto was considering a censorship policy to prohibit groups like Queers Against Israeli Apartheid from participating in the annual parade and dyke march.
Pride Toronto has since backed down due to community backlash, but a leaked letter now reveals that the policy emerged as a result of pressure from City Councillor Kyle Rae:
Free speech is to be encouraged, but free speech of this nature is not in keeping with the expression of Pride. (link)
The City of Toronto provides funding to Pride Toronto ($175,000 last year), and Councillor Rae chairs the Economic Development Committee of City Council, which oversees funds for Pride.
Following Pride Toronto's refusal to censor parade participants, Rae wrote that "the City of Toronto must ascertain if the City's policies concerning anti-discrimination are compromised by QuAIA's rhetoric and messaging. Clearly some feel that the need to provide a safe and welcoming environment is not being met." He then cited the Peter Shurman motion condemning Israeli Apartheid Week as his rationale. (link)
According to Xtra, a meeting was held in Mayor David Miller's office yesterday with Councillor Rae in attendance, to discuss funding for Pride Toronto, and the issue is expected to come up at Council this week:
City council's next meeting is scheduled for March 31, with another for April 1 — in which the topic of Pride Toronto funding is expected to come up. Additionally, budget meetings set for April 15 and 16 could further address funding for the event. (link)