Anti-Black Racism and Current Events

Black Lives Matter.

Planned Parenthood Toronto stands alongside and in support of Toronto’s Black communities, and Black communities everywhere, following the heightened presence of anti-Black  violence in our news feeds, our community, and in communities across Canada and the US. Your fight for justice is our fight for justice: we add our voice to the call for action and demand justice for Regis Korchinski-Paquet, an Afro-Indigenous woman and a member of Toronto’s Black youth community, who lost her life after police had been called to her home for assistance. 

Portrait of Regis Korchinski-Paquet

illustrated by @stuffbyjustine

We further acknowledge the structural violence and anti-Black racism that led to the deaths of Regis Korchinski-Paquet, Jason Campbell, Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Tony McDade, Breonna Taylor, and so many others, is deeply connected to the disproportional impact of COVID-19 on BIPOC communities.

Black, Indigenous and POC communities experiencing the violence of white supremacy isn’t just an American issue. It’s an issue that’s also woven into the fabric of Canada’s history. We say the names of the people that have died while interacting with police in Canada, outlined here by Desmond Cole: Regis Korchinski-Paquet. Jason Collins. Eishia Hudson. D’Andrew Campbell. Randy Cochrane. Sean Thompson. Machuar Madut. Greg Ritchie. Chad Williams. Jaskamal Singh Lail. Nicholas Gibbs. Orlando Brown. Josephine Pelletier. Brydon Whitstone. Pierre Coriolan. Abdirahman Abdi. Bony Jean-Pierre. Kwasi Skene-Peters. Andrew Loku. Abdurahman Ibrahim Hassan. René Gallant. Marc Ekamba-Boekwa. Phuong Na (Tony) Du. Jermaine Carby. Nicholas Thorne-Belance. Alain Magloire. Ian Pryce. Sammy Yatim. 

A full and transparent investigation into the death of Regis Korchinski-Paquet by the Ontario SIU is only the beginning; we call on our local legislators and various levels of government to do the work of building the trust and confidence that Black children, youth and adults, Black Torontonians, Black Ontarians, and Black Canadians have every right to ask of their government and institutions. Despite these systems failing them time and time again. 

As an agency committed to serving and removing barriers for diverse groups of youth in Toronto, we must work together to confront white supremacy in all its forms, and to centre Black, Indigenous and POC voices and experiences. This comes with actively decentering whiteness in our work at PPT, in our community and in ourselves. We stand in solidarity with and want to express our support for those who are protesting anti-Black racism, including when, where, and how  Black folks are choosing to express that they have had enough.

As a feminist organization, PPT recognizes that racial justice is inherently a feminist issue: we cannot call on our leaders to take action if we do not take action ourselves. Moving forward, we’ll be creating more concrete goals and objectives for how we as an organization can improve our services and opportunities specifically for Black youth in Toronto and the GTA, and how we have a direct hand in challenging the systems of oppression that create barriers for Black youth and Black communities in Toronto and surrounding areas. 

We cannot leave this labour to our Black community members, leaders and peers. To the Black youth of Toronto: we will continue to work on ways to help push back against barriers to accessing resources and create space for you here at PPT.  

-Sarah Hobbs, 

Executive Director of Planned Parenthood Toronto

what we can do as allies: 

who we can we talk to

Contact your local Member of Parliament, Member of Provincial Parliament, city councillor or other local political figures. These are the elected officials in your community that you can reach out to as a show of support and solidarity.

Contact Arif Virani, MP for Parkdale-High Park

Contact Bhutila Karpoche, MPP for Parkdale-High Park

Contact Gord Perks, Councillor for Parkdale-High Park

Contact Attorney General Doug Downey via the Ministry of the Attorney General

what we can say

Hi, I’m [calling/emailing] in regards to the incident that occurred at 100 High Park Avenue. I’m a citizen who would like to express my anger and concern over the death of 29 year old Regis Korchinski-Paquet. A full, public and completely independent investigation must be made into the allegations that this death was caused by a mishandling of the situation by police. 

Sincerely, 

[your name]

places we can donate to

TAIBU CHC – A Black Community Healthcare Centre: http://taibuchc.ca/en/

Across Boundaries: http://www.acrossboundaries.ca/

Black Health Alliance Canada: http://blackhealthalliance.ca/

Toronto Urban Alliance on Race Relations: https://urbanalliance.ca/ 

Find a list of additional resources and organizations serving Black youth and communities, including links to their websites, in this twitter thread by clicking here https://twitter.com/PPofTO/status/1267542429399474181 or scroll down to the next section titled “Resources for Black Youth in Toronto” for contact info and links to their websites. Most of these organizations welcome monetary and in-kind donations, but for more information on their current needs and ways to donate, please visit their individual social media pages and websites. 

resource round up

Below is a plain text version of our Resource Round-up of organizations that serve Black youth and Black communities in Toronto and the GTA. Link to the original Twitter thread: https://twitter.com/PPofTO/status/1267542429399474181.

It also lives on our Instagram profile as a highlight labelled “For Black Youth”. Click here to view it on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/pptoronto/

Thread published June 1st, 2020. Please note that all “@” handles are for twitter; the Instagram highlight contains tags for organizations that are on Instagram.

1/18: Resource Round-Up: links to orgs and helpful info for Black youth in Toronto.

Scroll through this thread to find organizations that can offer different supports, including healthcare, counselling, legal support and other resources for Black youth in TO + the GTA.

2/18: Not Another Black Life @notanotherblk

3/18: Black Lives Matter Toronto

  • General email: info@blacklivesmatter.ca 
  • Media: media@blacklivesmatter.ca
  • Speakers: speakers@blacklivesmatter.ca 
  • www.blacklivesmatter.ca  

4/18: TAIBU CHC: Black Community Health Care Centre @TAIBU_CHC

  • Clinic: (416) 644-3536
  • Admin: (416) 644-3539
  • Email contact form available on website (visit “contact us” page)
  • http://taibuchc.ca/en/

5/18: Women’s Health in Women’s Hands @WHIWHCHC

  • Community Health Centre for racialized women in Toronto + GTA.
  • General Inquiries: 416-593-7655
  • Clinical Services: 416-593-7655, Ext.7
  • E-mail: info@whiwh.com 
  • http://www.whiwh.com/ 

6/18: Black Health Alliance @BlackHealthCAN 

7/18: Across Boundaries @AB_MentalHealth

8/18: Black Queer Youth Program 

9/18: Urban Alliance on Race Relations @UARRToronto

10/18: Some of the following legal resources are taken from the BLM website, and included in this thread for your convenience. You can find their original list here:  https://blacklivesmatter.ca/legal-resources/  

11/18: Black Legal Action Centre @BLAC_Ontario

12/18: Community Legal Clinics

  • Legal Aid Ontario @LegalAidOntario or @AidejuridiqueON
  • Toronto: 416-979-1446
  • Canada wide: 1-800-668-8258 Mon-Fri, 8am-5pm EST for help in 300+ languages.
  • http://www.legalaid.on.ca/legal-clinics/ 

13/18: Specialty Legal Clinics:

  • Legal Aid Ontario @LegalAidOntario or @AidejuridiqueON
  • Toronto: 416-979-1446
  • Canada wide: 1-800-668-8258 Mon-Fri, 8am-5pm EST for help in 300+ languages.
  • http://www.legalaid.on.ca/services/legal-clinics/ 

14/18: Government Agency Advocacy Organizations:

Justice for Children and Youth @JFCY

  • Tel: 416-920-1633
  • Ontario Toll Free: 1-866-999-JFCY (5329) 
  • info@jfcy.org  (requests for legal advice not answered via email)
  • https://jfcy.org/en/  

15/18: Human Rights Legal Support Centre @HRLSC_ON

  • Tel: (416) 597-4900
  • Toll Free: 1-866-625-5179
  • TTY: (416) 597-4903
  • TTY Toll Free: 1-866 612-8627
  • Phone: Mon-Wed, Fri: 9a-5p. Thurs: 2p-6p
  • http://www.hrlsc.on.ca/en/welcome  

16/18: General Probono Legal Services:

JusticeNet @JusticeNet_

17/18: Probono Law Ontario @ProBonoOntario

18/18: Community Based Legal Advocacy