Toronto mayor Rob Ford continues his streak of anti-gay behavior after he voted Thursday against a proposal that will aid gay homeless youths in Toronto, making him the only council member to vote against the proposal. Ford’s non-support for the proposal resulted to council votes of 37-1, according to the Star.
The proposal was created to make homeless shelters across Toronto more gay-friendly by providing anti-homophobia training to current employees of different shelters. This will also mandate the head of Toronto’s shelters to allocate 25 percent of all beds in an existing youth shelter to homeless LGBQ2s (lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, two-spirited) teenagers.
The proposal also encourages interested parties to operate homeless shelters dedicated to housing homeless LGBT youth.
According to Krystin Wong-Tam, a council member and LGBT supporter, the proposal would solve one of Toronto’s most pressing issues:
“We have a shelter system that the LGBT youth community does not feel comfortable in. They would rather be on the streets than in the shelter system. We need to ensure the services the city provides are going to be accessible to all, free from discrimination.”
Ford’s non-support for the proposal was criticized by some members of the council, accusing him of being a homophobic. Krystin Wong-Tam, the only openly lesbian member of the council, said:
“The mayor is homophobic. He’s consistent. He’s done everything he can to demonstrate this is a community he doesn’t care about… I think he’s voting with his values, and his values are he doesn’t support the LGBT community.”
However, Ford insisted that he is not homophobic, although he did not give any explanation for his lone vote against the gay youth proposal. Recently, Ford was the center of LGBT controversy after he refused to stand and acknowledge the presence of the organizers of the World Pride Parade. He again denied having anti-gay sentiments, but similar with his non-support for the proposal, Rob Ford did not give any explanation for the organizer snub.
Ford had used a homophobic slur against Justin Trudeau, a straight Liberal Party figure, in his infamous “crack video” in 2013. Ford has also admitted to snubbing the annual Pride festival due to personal preferences.
These blatant anti-gay behaviors have made a few observers speculate that Rob Ford might just be trying to attracthomophobic voters in a desperate attempt to keep his political career afloat, which has been spiraling down rapidly since last year.
[Image from West Annex News via Flickr]