Thursday, September 10, 2009

Thunder Bay residents unite to protest anti-gay attack...

Thunder Bay residents are walking and rallying Friday evening to protest the recent attack on Jake Raynard, a local gay man who was left severely injured and in hospital after last weekend's incident. I'll be with them in spirit...

The following press release was sent out today to the Facebook group, 'Unified Community around Jake Raynard'

Press Release
September 10, 2009

Our Community Response to Violence

Friends and family of Jake Raynard are inviting the greater Thunder Bay community to a walk and a rally starting at Waverly Park at 6 pm on Friday, September 11 to positively respond to the targeted violence Jake and some friends experienced a week ago.

On Friday, September 4th, Jake, a 30 year old gay man and some of his friends were attacked by a group of men outside a bar in downtown Port Arthur. The beating left Jake with 15 fractures to his cheekbone, a broken eye socket, a broken jaw and a broken upper palate. This violent hate crime has shocked, devastated and enraged Jake, his family, and the entire Thunder Bay community. This is not the first time this type of attack has taken place and it is time for the community to respond in a positive display of support.

The Unified Community around Jake Raynard is calling on all people in the greater Thunder Bay community to attend this rally to:

1. Welcome Jake back into our community from the hospital, give him support, help him with his desire to put a face to hate crimes of all kinds, and acknowledge his courage in coming forward.

2. To stand united as a community and declare that WE the residents of the greater Thunder Bay area and our response to this hate crime define this community, not the attackers or this terrible crime.

This is a matter that concerns the safety of all groups in our community, the image of our beloved city, and the future we build together.

Stand up for your community as we march through the Port Arthur downtown district, and return to Waverly Park to hear from a diverse group of community leaders.

This is a crucial time for the greater Thunder Bay community-- let’s make Jake’s heroism and our community response be the stepping stone for healing and positive change on our streets and in our homes.


Here's another link to the Facebook group.

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