Hamilton police chief Eric Girt was admonished by a member of the public at the start of the Hamilton Police Services Board meeting on Thursday (Sept. 12).
Earlier this week during an appearance on a local radio talk show, Girt made comments pertaining to the LGBTQ2 community that referred to “sex in public washrooms at Centre Mall.” The comments have created a public uproar.
The chief did issue a written apology saying: “I appreciate the impact of the words I chose and for this, I apologize. I recognize the relationship with our 2SLGBTQ+ community is strained but I am committed to repairing this relationship and moving forward.”
For many in the LGBTQ2 community and beyond, the apology just didn’t cut it.
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Hamilton resident Michael Demone addressed the board at the start of Thursday’s meeting and issued a scathing admonishment of the police chief’s words and the damage they have done.
He pointed out that Girt’s words tap into the most harmful LGBTQ2 stereotypes that are used to justify hate crimes against them.
“[Chief Girt] has demonstrated repeatedly and without care, animosity toward LGBT people,” Demone said, adding that Girt is “a threat and a liability.”
Demone’s address finished off with the promise that more complaints against the chief would be forthcoming.
Neither the Board nor the chief responded to Demone’s presentation.