Toronto law enforcement continue their search for two people who spray painted a rainbow crosswalk with a swastika in the city’s Church Wellesley Village last week.
Toronto Police Service’s LGBTQ and Queer Internal Support Network (TPS LGBTQ-ISN) reported the incident on Friday, and posted a photo of the vandalized crosswalk with the swastika and initials “S.F.,” which some sources indicate may be in reference to white nationalist forum, Stormfront.
“Yesterday, 2 ppl deliberately trying to conceal their identity committed a despicable Hate Crime in the @ChurchWellesley Village,” the unit’s tweet read.
Yesterday, 2 ppl deliberately trying to conceal their identity committed a despicable Hate Crime in the @ChurchWellesley Village. If you saw this swastika being painted in the Church and Alexander St. intersection, please contact @TorontoPolice Sgt Dyck @TPS51Div 416-808-5184. pic.twitter.com/bu1sy4mArV
— TPS LGBTQ-ISN (@TDotGayCops) August 3, 2018
The rainbow crosswalk made its first appearance shortly before WorldPride at Toronto in 2014, and later became a permanent emblem of the city’s queer residents and neighborhood.
Crosswalks like these have recently been the targets of multiple acts of vandalism. Before Paris’ pride march this year, a similar event occurred wherein the city’s rainbow crosswalks were vandalized to read “LGBT out of France” and “LGBT Dictator.”
In many instances, the oftentimes temporary crosswalks meant for pride month festivities become permanent symbols of queer solidarity in these cities. Many of these cities also happen to be French or Canadian.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo has since made the city’s rainbow crosswalks permanent, and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau even joined in on Vancouver Pride festivities yesterday.
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) August 5, 2018
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