As police in Orlando continue to investigate the deadliest mass shooting in American history, a large group gathered at Barbara Hall Park Sunday night, for a vigil.
Fifty people were killed, and at least fifty others were injured, after a gunman opened fire at Pulse Nigthclub early Sunday morning.
The Toronto Sisters organized the event via Facebook, asking attendees to “bring a candle, say a prayer, seek or give comfort.”
It’s estimated several hundred people packed into the Church Street park to express their condolences, share in the grief and console eachother.
Mayor John Tory released the following statement:
“Today, Toronto mourns the murder of 50 innocent people in Orlando, Florida.
This terrifying and horrific act of violence is devastating to the LGBTQ community around the world, and to all of us who support their right to live and love freely and safely.
As a city, we condemn any and all acts of violence against the LGBTQ community.
We condemn those who spread fear and hatred.
We condemn the ongoing resistance to gun regulations in the US that could help prevent these mass killings, which have taken the lives of little children at school, women at the doctors office, couples at the movies, elderly parishioners at their church.
And we rededicate ourselves to making sure Toronto is a beacon of acceptance and equality to the world.
I know that the LGBTQ community in Toronto still experiences violence, discrimination and intolerance.
And I ask everyone who calls Toronto home to join me in saying, no more.
I know that right now people are afraid, but our city will work to keep you safe each and every day including Pride Month.
I know that right now people are angry, but our city will not tolerate reactions of violence or aggression toward any group or religion.
As we celebrate Pride Month, Toronto will remember all those who have fought to protect the lives and rights of the LGBTQ community, and we rededicate ourselves to making our city a safe space for people to love whoever they choose.
Our hearts are with Orlando, and our city stands in solidarity with the LGBTQ community around the world.”
— Pride Toronto (@PrideToronto) June 13, 2016
Pride month is underway in Toronto and there are no plans to alter or cancel any of the planned festivities, including the parade, considered to be the main event.
However, security for the event, and all of the others are currently being reviewed.
— Mark Saunders (@marksaunderstps) June 12, 2016
**Photo via Global News