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Capital Pride gets federal money for security

Capital Pride will be receiving money from the federal government to cover costs of added security measures at this year's Pride parade and other events.

The federal government will be providing up to $1.5 million to Pride organizations across the country for increased security measures this year.

As first reported by CTV News, Minister of Women and Gender Equality and Youth Marci Ien confirmed the funding plan during an event across the street from Parliament Hill on Monday.

The money is being provided to Fierté Canada Pride to distribute to local event organizers who apply for assistance.

Capital Pride organizers say up to $50,000 of that money will go towards pride events in Ottawa.

"We are taking steps now to make sure that our event can go off safely and that folks are able to come celebrate proudly in the environment where they're safe and welcome," says Capital Pride Executive Director Toby Whitfield.

The recent backlash involving LGBTQ2S+ rights is of concern to Pride parade organizers everywhere.

"Unfortunately, we've seen a real rise in anti-2SLGBQT hate, here in Ottawa and all across the country," Whitfield says. "Recently, at our Winter Pride programming, we saw some of our family pride programming targeted with protesters trying to interrupt events and interfere with or programming."

Whitfield says preparations for this year's festival are already underway.

"A big part of work will be training volunteers," he says. "Of course, we'll also be investing in some physical infrastructure – barricades and that sort of thing, and then also safety personnel – so security, emergency services."

The annual Capital Pride Parade is held in August.

In mid-May, the national association of Canadian Pride organizations sent the federal government an "emergency funding proposal" asking for $1.5 million to help cover increased safety and security costs, stemming from concerns over a rise in anti-LGBTQ2S+ hate, violence, and threats.

"Our government will not stand by while hate and violence seek to reverse decades of progress," Ien said, joined by Tourism Minister Randy Boissonnault as well as Pride organizers and community advocates.

In a press release, Capital Pride say they welcome the funding from the federal government,

"Capital Pride welcomes today's announcement that the federal government will provide support to Fierté Canada Pride to establish an emergency safety fund for pride festivals across the country," the statement says.

"Today's announcement supports an immediate response to rising hate but we also know that this work will continue beyond this year's festival. Capital Pride will continue to work with partners across the country but we also look to all levels of government to play a role in combatting rising hate because no one should face hate for who they are, for their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression."

--With files from's Rachel Aiello Top Stories

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