We Remember Orlando: One Year Later

Monday, June 12, 2017

A year ago today, in the early morning of Sunday, June 12, 2016, a shooter opened fire on Latin night at Pulse, a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida. 49 people were killed, 53 people were injured, and many, many more were affected. This tragedy shook all of us; the impact was felt across cities, borders, nightclubs, and across our campuses.

On the evening of Tuesday, June 14, 2016, Vigil for Pulse Nightclub Tragedy was hosted on the front steps of University College by APUS and LGBTOUT. At the vigil, a banner measuring 6’ x 18’, with only the words “Love over hate, Pride not fear,” was unrolled and the hundreds who were gathered were invited to write messages of love, grief and solidarity. The next day, U of T hosted U of T Orlando Memorial: An Act of Solidarity and the banner was again rolled out for attendees to contribute more messages.  The banner was last laid out for contributions on Friday at the U of T Pride Pub.  The response that was captured was overwhelming.

This year, in commemoration of the shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, the banner has been digitized into a memorial poster for distribution across our campuses.  If you would like a copy of this poster, send us an email at sgdo@utoronto.ca or stop by the office. This project was made possible by a collaboration between APUS, LGBTOUT, the SGDO and Student Life.

If you are looking for a way to commemorate this day with community, The 519 is hosting Life – Loss – Light | We Remember Orlando tonight, 8-10pm, to remember those who died as well as all those from our diverse communities lost along the journey to freedom.

Read the CBC article about the mural, ‘Still Estamos Aqui’ by Janet Romero, which will be unveiled at The 519 tonight.