Anti-Black racism is real. As Ontario’s community union, CUPE Ontario advocates for strong, healthy communities that are safe for everyone. We stand in solidarity with Black Lives Matter – Toronto because CUPE members face anti-Black racism. We support Black Lives Matter because this is about us—about our members, our families, and our communities. But this is also about solidarity against oppression. We are proud to stand with Aboriginal groups, the student movement, and other allies in the fight against anti-Black racism.
We are pleased that the hard work of the Black Lives Matters – Toronto Coalition has led to the restoration of Afrofest to a two-day festival. But we urgently call on Mayor John Tory, Chief Mark Saunders, and Premier Kathleen Wynne to take immediate action to implement BLMTO’s other essential demands:
- the release of the name(s) of the officer(s) who killed Andrew Loku.
- charges to be laid against the officers who killed Mr. Loku.
- the immediate and public release of any video footage from the apartment complex of Andrew Loku on the night he was murdered.
- an apology to the family of Andrew Loku and monetary compensation.
- an overhaul of the Special Investigations Unit, with adequate consultation from families victimized by police violence, the Black community, and the community-at-large.
The labour movement must not stand idly by in anti-racist struggles. CUPE Ontario is proud to stand shoulder to shoulder with BLMTO in workplaces and communities in Toronto and beyond to hold our elected politicians to account and demand that, as a starting point, they implement the above changes to address anti-Black racism.