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TTC Honours National Indigenous History Month and Pride Month in June

Last year, we committed to making the TTC a more diverse and inclusive organization – both for our employees and all our customers. We launched the 10-Point Action Plan for Diversity and Inclusion and since then have been deliberate in our choices to embrace and publicly celebrate all that makes this city great. The TTC is truly embracing the motto inscribed in Toronto’s Coat of Arms, Diversity Our Strength.

In June, we will recognize both National Indigenous History Month and Pride at the TTC with customer and employee campaigns. These are important campaigns for the TTC – they increase awareness and serve as a starting point for us to learn about others so we can understand new perspectives, change our thinking for the better and ultimately become a more inclusive community, together.

This weekend, we learned of the discovery of the remains of over 200 children on the grounds of the Kamloops Indian Residential School in Tk’emlúps te Secwépemc First Nation territory. On behalf of the TTC, we want to express our sympathies for this unthinkable loss. Today (June 1) at 2:15 p.m., we will be stopping all service for two minutes to honour the 215 children and all others who lost their lives to the residential school system.

National Indigenous History Month
National Indigenous History Month is a time to honour the history and achievements of First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples. It is a time to recognize the strength of present-day communities and gives us the opportunity to learn about the diversity of Indigenous Peoples in Canada.

To honour the rich history of Indigenous Peoples, we consulted with the Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation and an Indigenous Young Elder, Philip Cote, to create an awareness campaign that will run in TTC stations and work locations, and on TTC vehicles, starting June 1. The campaign showcases eight locations that highlight the cultural teachings, traditions and historical and present day influence of Indigenous Peoples. You can find a pdf version of this poster campaign (linked below). These posters are also hanging across all TTC properties so we can all respect and appreciate the history behind the places we pass every day.

Indigenous History Month 2021 campaign posters

We have also wrapped five streetcars with a land acknowledgement in the spirit of equity, inclusion and reconciliation. We are proud to be holding ourselves accountable to recognize the original people of the land we are on.

Throughout June, we will also be featuring employees who agreed to share their stories of being Indigenous in Canada and at the TTC. We would like to thank our employees for sharing their heritage and their experiences.

Pride Month
As in previous years, we’ve wrapped one of our buses on the 94 Wellesley route with Pride-themed artwork to celebrate the history, courage and diversity of Toronto’s Lesbian Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Intersex, Queer, Questioning, Two-Spirit communities (LGBTQ2S+), If you spot the bus, be sure to take a photo and share it on social media using #TTCPride. For those of you who aren’t able to see the bus in person, we will be sharing a video of the bus on its route on our MyTTC | Now TVs.

If you’re visiting 1900 Yonge St. this month, look for the Pride Flag, which will be flying from June 1 to 14, followed by the Transgender Pride Flag from June 15 to June 30. These flags symbolize our commitment to combat homophobia, transphobia and biphobia in our workplace and on our transit system.

We know there is still a lot of work to be done to create a more welcoming, inclusive organization and transit system. Beyond just this month, we would like to continue to share the stories and lived experiences of employees who identify as Indigenous and part of the LGBTQ2S+ community on our internal communications channels. If you’d like to share your story, please e-mail MyTTCWeekly@ttc.ca.

We want to thank the Marketing and Customer Experience and Corporate Communications teams for their work on these campaigns. We hope they serve as reminders to never stop learning about our rich histories, to continue seeking out ways to create a more just society, and to celebrate our diversity to the fullest.

As always, stay safe.

Keisha Campbell
Chief Diversity and Culture Officer

Richard J. Leary
Chief Executive Officer
June 1, 2021

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