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Pride organizers scale back police presence in parade

Pride organizers scale back police presence in parade

Pride organizers scale back police presence in parade

"With the recent verdict in the Philando Castile case Twin Cities Pride has made a decision to forgo this part of the police participation in the parade for this year and respect the pain the community is feeling right now".

Parade organisers released a statement addressing police presence at the event after the trial of police officer Jeronimo Yanez, who was acquitted of manslaughter charges over the shooting of African-American school worker Philando Castile during a traffic stop.

Meanwhile, several uniformed police officers marched in the parade, including Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau.

"It's time to be lifting each other up, not excluding one another". Harteau, who is the first openly gay police chief in Minneapolis, points out that she was the parade's grand marshal three years ago. "Our intent is and was to respect the pain that the people of color and transgender communities have experienced as of late, but our original approach fell short of our mission".

Twin Cities Pride organizers are asking police officers not to march in the big Minneapolis parade on Sunday in light of the Philando Castile case and continued tension between officers and "marginalized" communities.

The statement said organizers would stick to a plan announced earlier to have one unmarked police vehicle clear the way for the parade, as required by law.

Police say that because of the protest, the parade is about 90 minutes behind schedule. This year, there will only be one unmarked police auto at the front of the parade.

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"For an organization that prides itself on being accepting and inclusive, the hypocrisy amazes me", he said.

Hearteau said she plans to attend with her family.

Chants of "No justice, no pride!" rang out at the Ashley Rukes GLBT Pride Parade in downtown Minneapolis, with one large banner blaring "Justice for Philando".

St. Paul officers will still be taking part in the Pride Festival at a booth they share with Minneapolis officers in Loring Park on Saturday and Sunday.

"I understand people are angry and we can respect their feelings, but the reality is at the end of the day if we can't work together it becomes more challenging to become better as a community and to become better as a police department", Nash said.

Twin Cities Pride will also continue to keep communication channels open with all community members to ensure our events and activities that provide a place to foster inclusion, educate and create awareness of issues, and to celebrate our achievements.

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