Ontario's minister responsible for anti-racism praised Black Lives Matter Toronto (BLMTO) for sparking a conversation about race with its series of high-profile protests.
BLMTO and other community groups are set to discuss issues pertaining to racism – specifically anti-black racism – with Premier Kathleen Wynne and Mayor John Tory later this week at the Daniels Spectrum in Regent Park.
Michael Coteau, Ontario's minister responsible for anti-racism, praised BLMTO's work, saying that while the group may anger some, it is forcing residents to have difficult conversations about race.
"When you talk about race – period – people get uncomfortable, because people don't know how to react," Coteau told CBC Radio's Metro Morning.
Wynne agreed to the meeting after BLMTO's lengthy protest outside Toronto police headquarters wound up on the front lawn of Queen's Park in early April. More recently, the activist group blocked Toronto's Pride parade until a list of its demands was agreed to, including the banning of police floats from future parades.
The demonstrations have been controversial, but effective, Coteau said.Effective: well, yes. When there are no negative (and only positive) consequences after you hold up an entire parade while people swelter and get heat stroke because of the blistering sun and won't let things get going again until your "controversial" demands are met--hell, it doesn't get more "effective" than that.