The rally began at the foot of Davie Street in English Bay Park and was called Join Hands For Justice – A Joyful Celebration of Community. At 1:30pm, everyone marched hand in hand up Davie Street to Hornby, where the attack occurred.
I was very proud to march side by side with Mayoral candidate and City Councillor Peter Ladner and fellow candidates for Vancouver City Council – Councillor Suzanne Anton, and Michael Geller; along with School Board candidate Margit Nance and Parks Board candidates Melissa De Genova, Laura McDiarmid, Christopher Richardson and Sharon Urton.
The Centre’s Jennifer Breakspear addressed the rally, along with Little Sister’s bookstore owner Jim Deva, Chief of Police Jim Chiu, and leaders from all walks of life within the GLBT community.
“Let it be known that these streets belong to all of us, and we’re safe to walk down these streets holding hands,” Breakspear told the WestEnder, in an article that continues:
“A survey of online comments written in response to news articles about the September 27 attack on 27-year-old gay man Jordan Smith shows that prejudice toward homosexuals still persists in the Lower Mainland, despite the popular notion that Vancouver is an inclusive, tolerant city.
Sean Bickerton, an NPA city council candidate, recalls being assaulted by two off-duty club bouncers 25 years ago in the Shoppers Drug Mart parking lot at Davie and Thurlow.
“The only thing that saved my life was that a good samaritan drove his van up onto the sidewalk and interrupted them,” he recalls. “This [Jordan Smith] attack confirms the necessity of the Social Justice 12 curriculum to help combat the epidemic of children being taught to hate.”