Kamloops Pride and police promoting Safe Spaces Program
2022-11-17 12:31 PST
The Kamloops Pride Society and Community Policing Unit are hoping to help 2SLGBTQPIA+ find safety a little easier with the assistance of a rainbow shield symbol.
In recognition of the upcoming Transgender Day of Remembrance, Nov. 20, 2022, the Kamloops RCMP Detachment and Pride Society are launching a Safe Spaces Pilot Program later this month. The Transgender Day of Remembrance is a day to recognize and mourn those in the trans community who lost their lives too soon due to transphobia and hate.
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Safe Spaces is a pilot program that aims to engage local businesses to promote and provide safety for the 2SLGBTQPIA+ community, said Ashton O’Brien of the Kamloops Pride Society.
Businesses that apply for and are successful in their review by the Kamloops Pride Society and the Kamloops RCMP will be provided with a rainbow shield sticker to put on their storefront, and this signifies that if someone in the 2SLGBTQPIA+ community is experiencing hate, they may enter the business and wait safely for the police to arrive.
By partnering together to vet businesses that apply, the Kamloops RCMP and Pride Society can
ensure that any issues reported to Pride and its partner organizations, but not to police, are taken into consideration as part of the review process.
Historically this has been a community that has not always felt supported and has been subjected to hate crimes; we want to do a better job in the community of being inclusive and making people feel safe to report these crimes to police, said Corporal Dana Napier of the Kamloops RCMP Community Police Unit.
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We recognize the importance of the Transgender Day of Remembrance and the systemic and societal pressures faced by the trans and gender-diverse communities, added Cpl. Napier.
It’s our hope that by working together with the Kamloops Pride Society on implementing various joint and collaborative initiatives, including diversity and inclusively training for police officers in Kamloops, we can move toward making more people feel supported and safe.
Partners of the Safe Spaces Program include the Kamloops Chamber of Commerce, downtown and North Shore business improvement associations, and the School District 73. For more information on Safe Spaces and a regularly updated list of participating businesses, please visit the Kamloops Pride website at www.kamloopspride.com.
Cpl. Crystal EvelynMedia Relations Office
560 Battle Street, Kamloops, BC V2C 6N4
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