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Statement Regarding Planned Protest of Mandates by First Responder Group at Ontario Police and Fire Fighter Memorials on September 13, 2021

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It has come to the attention of the Ontario Police Memorial Foundation (OPMF) that a group of first responders plan to engage in a “silent protest against mandates” on Monday, September 13, 2021 at 11:45 a.m. at the site of the Ontario Police and Fire Fighters Memorials at Queen’s Park in Toronto.

The OPMF is a charitable foundation formed by the Police Association of Ontario (PAO), the Ontario Provincial Police Association (OPPA), the Toronto Police Association (TPA), the Ontario Senior Officers’ Police Association (OSOPA), and the Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police (OACP). The Foundation is responsible for the management of the Ontario Police Memorial, which includes adding names of fallen officers whenever required and hosting an annual Ceremony of Remembrance.

On behalf of our members, the OPMF denounces such a protest occurring at these memorial sites, which are intended to honour Ontario’s police personnel and fire fighters who have made the ultimate sacrifice and lost their lives in the line of duty. To be clear, our Foundation and those within our organization do not endorse and are not affiliated in any way with the group coordinating today’s protest against mandates.

The OPMF is confident the vast majority of sworn and civilian police personnel across the province are committed to doing their part to help keep their communities and fellow first responders safe and healthy. Some policies recently announced or proposed in many municipalities pertaining to COVID-19 vaccinations for first responders are an important step toward ensuring that.

Everyone has the right to peacefully protest and stand up for what they believe in, and we are certainly respectful of that right, but the police and fire fighter memorials are not the appropriate venue to hold a demonstration against a political issue such as mandates. We respectfully request that the organizers of this protest re-locate their gathering so as to preserve the purpose and integrity of what the police and fire memorials represent within our first responder communities and for the families of those who have lost loved ones in the line of duty.

In Unity,

Jason Tomlinson, President
Ontario Police Memorial Foundation

2021 Ontario Police Memorial Virtual Ceremony of Remembrance

Click on image to watch 2021 Ontario Police Memorial Foundation Ceremony of Remembrance

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Please join the Ontario Police Memorial Foundation on Sunday May 2, 2021 at 11amET as we pay tribute to those police officers in the province of Ontario who died in the line of duty. They are our “Heroes In Life, Not Death”.

The Ontario Police Memorial Foundation will live broadcast the 22nd Annual Ceremony of Remembrance from Queen’s Park, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. A full professional quality broadcast was planned but had to be cancelled due to the Stay At Home Order limit of 5 people for outdoor gatherings in Ontario.

In lieu of gathering together in person to celebrate the lives of our fallen, viewers are encouraged to tune into the Ontario Police Memorial Foundation Facebook Live at 11am and follow along as the Ontario Police Memorial Foundation President, a representative of families, a piper and an officer to lay a single wreath will be live broadcasted from a cell phone to solemnly honour those who have paid the ultimate price while in service to their communities.

Itinerary

11am:  OPMF President – Jason Tomlinson

11:05am: Guest Speaker – Brenda Orr – OPP ret., widow of honoured fallen OPP officer David Mounsey

11:10am: Laying of Wreath – Wreath Layer – Sergeant Kevin van Schubert; Toronto Police Service – Friend of OPP PC Marc Hovingh and Family

11:15am Amazing Grace by Piper – Constable Hector MacDonald – Toronto Police Service

The link, once live, will be posted on this blog at CeremonyofRemembrance.ca/Live and it is appropriate to advise people wishing to watch to click on the blog link, or directly on the Facebook page hosting the Facebook Live at the link Facebook.com/HeroesInLife.

Individuals and organizations are encouraged to post videos and photos to their social media using the official hash tag for the event of #HeroesInLife.

Message From OPMF President Jason Tomlinson


 
Message from Ontario Premier Doug Ford

 

 

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