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Ottawa Dyke March: Our March, Our Stories
12:45 PM on Saturday Aug. 24th
Canadian Tribute to Human Rights, Elgin St.

[This event is taking place on the traditional unceded territory of the Algonquin People]

There will be a Rally, a March, and a Picnic!

Rally at the Human Rights Monument (Elgin and Lisgar) at 12:45

March departs from the Human Rights Monument at 1:30

Picnic at Minto Park (Elgin and Gilmour) at 2:30

Ottawa Dyke March is organized by a Committee of community volunteers. We strive to operate within a feminist framework to create spaces that allow the experiences and identities of ALL LGBTQ+ women and dyke-identified folks to not only exist but also thrive.

Contact us (contact below) if you would like to volunteer! The Rally, to be followed by the March, begins at 12:45 PM and will start at the Human Rights Monument on Elgin and Lisgar. The Dyke March Ottawa 2019 Honoured Guest: Diane Beauregard! The picnic will follow the March at Minto Park with free food, art from local artists, performances, a kids corner with crafts and shade, and music by DJ Avenue and SeiiizMikk! In the case of rain, the gathering will happen at the Jack Purcell Center. If possible, please bring a fork, camping plate or Tupperware and a water bottle so we can reduce waste.

Rules Of Engagement:

- Dyke March is trans-inclusive and trans-positive; transphobic language or sentiments will not be tolerated.
- Maintain a respectful dialogue.
- Please be patient and respectful with the facilitators/moderators.
- Please start from the assumption that the facilitators and community members are here in good faith.
- Respect people's privacy, do not out participants.
- Questions are welcome, and please ask for further clarification from organizers if needed.
- Address problematic things as they come up, involve the organizing team as early as possible.

Accessibility:

We will be reserving space for those with accessibility needs towards the front of the Human Rights Memorial (where there are stairs to sit on). We also invite persons with mobility devices to the front of the March to set the pace. Our final destination will have benches, and people are welcome to meet us there rather than walking the full march route.

We encourage participants to be scent-free or low-scent for the event. If you are wearing scents or smoking, please stand towards the back.

Dyke March Statement on History:

Ottawa’s first Dyke March was in 2004, created with the mission to create a space for women to be queer, visible, and political. This space was originally centred around cisgender women, and discussions about the inclusion of trans men of dyke experience and trans women led to the implementation of a trans-inclusive policy. It is our understanding that the intention of the organizers was to create a safer space for all people who relate to dyke experience and identity, an important goal which is shared by the current Dyke March organizers.

Historically Dyke March organizers and participants have excluded, erased, invalidated, and tokenized trans women and their experiences, particularly trans women of colour, through words and actions. Dyke March has also been complicit in wider societal systems of oppression. Whether intentionally or unintentionally, the Dyke March has acted as an oppressor to women it ought to centre and value. It is the goal of the organisers to move past this history, and to create a space for everyone.

Dyke March Statement on Inclusion:

For us DYKE refers to any and all persons who identify as such, meaning cis, trans, or intersex women who identify as lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, lesboromantic and/or queer as well as any non-binary identified people who are queer, genderqueer, intersex or two-spirit and who identify as lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, lesboromantic and/or queer. This understanding of dyke aims to speak to a diversity of realities. As such, during the March there will be no identity policing and we trust that each and everyone marching with us respects and supports this.

We wish to specifically extend a welcoming invite to community members who use drugs, have mobility issues, sex workers, trans folks, bisexuals, people of colour, Indigenous women, and older people. Historically, actions have worked to silence these voices. Moving forward, we commit to doing our best to engaging parts of our communities that have been excluded.

Dyke March Statement on Police Exclusion:

For the first years of Ottawa Dyke March we did not acquire a permit or ask for a police escort. Today we chose not to get a permit because the Ottawa Dyke March is a peaceful political protest for the visibility of dykes, to demand political change, and to protest the corporatization of the Pride Parade, amongst other things.

Whether we like it or not, police will likely show up to escort and block traffic if they decide, regardless of our permit status. There will be community marshals to help keep the march safe and together, block traffic, and defuse problem situations. Individual members of our community who work with the police are welcome to march with us out of uniform.

Every year we have a head marshal who doubles as police liaison. They will be the only person who will speak to the police on behalf of Ottawa Dyke March, and that the police will speak to from the march. This helps avoid misunderstandings and discourages police from trying to bully marchers and boss around other marshals/organizers.

The finalized route will not be public until at least the day of the march. By only giving a few streets at a time this allows the organizers to change it up last minute to adapt to circumstances, like how many marchers we have, weather, and such.

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Contact us
Ottawadykemarch@gmail.com
Ottawa Dyke March (Facebook)
@ottawadykemarch (Twitter and Instagram)