Anti-racism rally in Dentonia Park set for morning of Saturday, Sept. 5, after signs and posters from earlier event torn down

The fence in Dentonia Park is shown in this photo from earlier this week after messages and posters against racism were torn down. There will be anti-racism rally in the park on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 5. Photo by Alan Shackleton.

By ALAN SHACKLETON

Calls are being made to install a permanent display against racism in Dentonia Park in the wake of a number of racist incidents that have taken place in the area this summer.

On Saturday, Aug. 29, community members made a stand against racism with a rally and the putting up of anti-racist signs and posters on a fence near the park’s cricket ground. The next day, the signs were torn down by unknown persons.

Organizers again put up messages and posters against racism and hate, and again they were torn down earlier this week.

Beaches-East York MPP Rima Berns-McGown, who attended the Aug. 29 anti-racism rally, told Beach Metro News yesterday (Sept. 3) that the community won’t back down after these latest acts of hate.

“I was disappointed but not surprised that the banners have been destroyed, not once but multiple times,” she said.

“We know that white supremacists and hate live in the east end, and Dentonia Park has been the site of more than one instance of it.”

Berns-McGown said she is in support of a permanent art installation or mural in the park against racism.

“We will continue to rise. We are determined to find a permanent way – through a permanent art installation or mural – of making that message loud and clear. Love will win. There is no place for hate in Beaches-East York.”

In response to the earlier posters and signs being taken down, another anti-racism rally will take place in Dentonia Park on the morning of Saturday, Sept. 5.

Organizers of the Sept. 5 rally said it was important to show resolve against these recent acts of hate.

“We left beautiful messages of love and a clear stance that hate and racism will not be tolerated,” said a Facebook post from Old’s Cool General Store in East York, which was one of the groups that took part in the Aug. 29 rally.

“Unfortunately the signs and banners were taken down the first night. We found them and we were able to rehang the United Against Hate banner and some other signs but these were taken down as well.”

The organizers said it was “important to show the resolve to maintain the anti-racist/anti-hate messages as much as possible in the park – and we have more banners and signs to put back up.”

Everyone is welcome to attend the Saturday, Sept. 5 anti-racism rally which starts at 10 a.m.

Dentonia Park is located just northwest of Danforth and Victoria Park avenues.


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