Premier Doug Ford took part in the York Region Pride parade in Newmarket on Saturday afternoon, amid mounting criticism for stating he wouldn’t participate in the upcoming Toronto Pride parade on June 23.
Ford’s press secretary Ivana Yelich confirmed the premier was out in Newmarket for Saturday’s march.
“Premier Ford said he would participate in this year’s Pride month. He’s thrilled to march today with the York Regional Police in the York Pride Parade,” Yelich said. “He wishes everyone taking part in events across the province a very happy Pride.”
York Regional Police said in a statement they were proud to be a part of the event.
“Today for us is about showing our support to our LGBTQ2+ community including members within our service,” York police said.
“This event is inclusive and all are welcome.”
Ford previously said he would only participate in the Toronto Pride parade if organizers reversed their decision to prevent uniformed Toronto police officers from marching.
However, the premier did say he would participate in other pride events.
WATCH: Premier Ford says he will not attend Toronto Pride parade
In January, Pride members voted 163-161 to keep uniformed officers out of the parade. Officers can still march, but not in uniform.
Uniformed officers were first barred from the parade in 2017 over concerns of racial profiling, and again in 2018 over criticism regarding the police response to the disappearance of several men missing from the city’s gay village.
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