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Caribbean Carnival Parade Spectators Will Be Searched for Weapons

Photo by {a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/15574096@N00/6055186426/"}refreshment_66{/a}, from the {a href="http://www.flickr.com/groups/torontoist/"}Torontoist Flickr Pool{/a}.

Following a city-wide rash of gun violence, a spokesperson for the festival formerly known as Caribana has told CP24 that security officers will be searching attendees at this year’s parade, on August 4. For the first time, guards will be making sure that spectators aren’t carrying weapons, alcohol, drugs, or other banned items.

The parade is the Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival’s marquee event—the climax of three weeks of Caribbean-themed celebration. Organizers estimate that it draws nearly a million people annually. Stephen Weir, a festival spokesperson and organizer, told the Globe and Mail that security staff will only be searching people on their way to the bleachers, which have a capacity of about 20,000. In other words, something like 980,000 parade-goers (by the organizers’ estimates) will still be able to carry all the guns and drugs they want—though we’re sure almost all of them can be trusted not to bring those things.

Weir also said that the decision to institute searches was not a response to recent high-profile shootings, like the one that took place on Danzig Street last week.

Comments

  • http://twitter.com/synshow Syn

    Hooray for optics.

  • CaligulaJones

    Indeed: banning gun clubs, gun sales at hunting and fishing shows, trying to ban ammunition sales…

    • Anonymous

      That is one way to start, not the full answer, but a good beginning

  • Anonymous

    Next Santa Clause Parade…

    …and the Pride Parade. Well, I would have said skip Pride, but if we have to do all parades…

    • Anonymous

      Why skip Pride? We know people bring guns to that.

  • Patricia Khan

    Having attended the celebrations and viewed it from the paid platform, I wander what is the reason for checking the paid patrons. The problem to me would be more focus should be on the unpaid patrons who walk about watching the parade and might be at a higher risk of someone lurking around to cause or create trouble with so many unsuspecting law abiding visitors within the parade route. While there might be a few who might try to sneak booze into the paid areas knowing its prohibited, its not a life and death situation as opposed to the magnitude of the crowd in the outlining areas. Security presence should be more noticeable in those areas of concern. Just room for thought