On behalf of businesses of the West End, our hearts go out to the victims of the tragic shooting in Orlando yesterday. Our prayers and thoughts are with the victims, their families, friends and community.

The West End and the Davie Village hold a special place in the hearts and minds of Vancouver’s LGBTQ2+ community in large part because it is a safe and welcoming place for all. This reputation has been decades in the making. The struggle for awareness, acceptance and tolerance is all the more relevant in the face of such a sudden, terrible and senseless act of hatred. Hope and love must and will prevail.

We acknowledge the important work that businesses, community groups, event organizers, and governments do to create and maintain safe spaces to socialize and celebrate.

To learn more about the local response to this tragedy, please followQmunity and the Vancouver Pride Society.

–Stephen Regan, Executive Director of the West End BIA