Agreement allows police in Vancouver Pride parade, but changes will be made

Modesto Morganelli
Mag 20, 2017

Vancouver police will walk in Vancouver's Pride Parade this summer after reaching an agreement with the Vancouver Pride Society, the police announced Thursday. "These minorities are marginalized and vulnerable groups have been historically oppressed by police and the symbol of that oppression is [the] uniform", said Burgess.

They had two petitions to consider in its decision - one asked that police not participate in the parade, and the other asked that police be included.

The VPD members will march in the parade as part of the City of Vancouver entry, which also includes staff and officials from the city, Vancouver Public Library, Vancouver park board, firefighters and first responders.

No marked police or law enforcement vehicles will be allowed in the parade.

"In the past it has been police, then fire, then ambulance".

"That is a request from the Vancouver Pride Society, we respect that". Randy Fincham, VPD spokesperson.

"So we have a number of officers, a small number of officers who'll be attending in uniform, the opportunity is there for some of our representative officers".

The chapter is also asking police not be allowed to march in the 2017 parade, saying "having the Vancouver Police Department on the ground to perform a civil service is understandable however having the institution participate on a float in the organized festivities of the actual parade is inappropriate and insulting to those who came before us to make Pride celebrations possible, some of who even died for the cause". The society recognised a uniformed officer symbolically stands for systems of racial and colonial oppression, a point repeatedly made by Black Lives Matter.

This petition comes after members of the Black Lives Matter Vancouver chapter pushed past year for the VPD to voluntarily withdraw all uniformed officers from the parade.

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