Ryan Fray files lawsuit against Manitoba Christian group alleging racial discrimination after failing 20 of the 52 questions on written test

Calls for lawsuit to be dismissed

By Joanne Levasseur, CBC News Posted: May 10, 2015 7:50 PM CT Last Updated: May 11, 2015 9:48 AM CT

Ryan Fray filed a lawsuit against the Manitoba and NorthwesternOntario District of the Pentecostal Assembly of Canada alleging racialdiscrimination.Ryan Fray filed a lawsuit against the Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario District of the Pentecostal Assembly of Canada alleging racial discrimination. (Facebook)

A Manitoba Christian group denies it racially discriminated against youth pastor Ryan Fray when it failed to process his application for ministerial credentials he needed to become a senior pastor.

The group asked the judge to throw Fray’s lawsuit out of court and make him pay the legal costs.

Fray, who is a youth pastor at New Beginnings Church (formerly Evangel Chapel), filed a lawsuit against the Manitoba and Northwestern Ontario District of the Pentecostal Assembly of Canada (PAOC) in November 2014.

Fray alleged that PAOC assistant district superintendent Andrew Porterfield told him in fall 2011 he took issue with granting him credentials because he was a “big creepy black guy.”

“[F]alse, vexatious and designed to be scandalous and embarrassing.”- Andrew Porterfield,  PAOC Assistant District Superintendent

In the statement of defence filed in January, Porterfield denied that he made the statement calling it “false, vexatious and designed to be scandalous and embarrassing.”

Fray’s suit also alleges district superintendent James Poirier told him the test in which he demonstrated the required knowledge didn’t matter because “we only give credentials to bright people.”

The district PAOC executive fired back in its court filing denying the remark and saying his test results did not demonstrate the knowledge to gain credentials. The statement of defence said Fray did poorly on the written examination failing 20 of the 52 questions “including failure on fundamental questions of faith and doctrine of the PAOC.”

The Anti-Black Racism Network (ABRN) argues that police carding is racist, anti-black and useless

POLICE CARDING: RACIST, ANTI-BLACK, AND USELESS

Anti-Black Racism Network asks why evidence-obsessed Mayor John Tory supports a practice as empirically harmful and ineffectual as carding

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MAY 13, 2015 9:38 PM Share on twitter 168 

A new coalition called the Anti-Black Racism Network (ABRN) held a press conference at the Ryerson Student Centre Wednesday morning to blast police carding and the civic leaders who support it — namely, Mayor John Tory, Toronto Police Services Board Chair Alok Mukherjee, and new Police Chief Mark Saunders.

Carding, if you’ve somehow missed it, is the police practice of arbitrarily stopping, questioning, and documenting a person — then entering their information into a database — to which young black men are disproportionately subjected.

The ABRN argues that the exercise is racist not only in practice but in theory. Especially in the absence of any evidence to support carding’s ostensible public safety objective, it can only be viewed as the latest manifestation of a centuries-old legacy of colonial efforts to put black people in their place.

Below, we’ve transcribed (and edited and condensed) excerpts from the statements delivered by each of the press conference’s five participants.

BIRCHTOWN, N.S.: Black Loyalist Heritage Centre to celebrate grand opening on June 6

History of struggle focus of new Black Loyalist Heritage Centre

Amy Amy Woolvett Published on May 13, 2015

BIRCHTOWN -Years of fierce struggle and dedication to keep and share the memory and history of the journey of the Black Loyalists will be celebrated with the grand opening of the Black Loyalist Heritage Centre next month.

A significant addition to the Nova Scotia museum family and a part of Canadian history, people from across the province and beyond will be coming to Birchtown to mark the museum’s official opening on Saturday, June 6 with celebration through music and a recounting of history.“We view the opening as a universal invitation to people all over the world to visit the centre and participate in this celebration of community and equality,” said the BLHC’s manager Beverly Cox.

Cox said visitors would come from far and wide to experience what people are calling the journey back to Birchtown.

The days celebrations will include performances byJuno award-winner JRDNJeremiah SparksDutch RobinsonShelley Hamilton, Cyndi Cain, Joe Sealy, the Nova Scotia Mass Choir, Shauntay Grant, Hillcrest Academy Djembe Drumming Group and much more.  The program will also feature John Franklin of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and the Book of Negroes author Lawrence Hill.

Hill will also be broadcasting Live at 5 at the centre on June 5, an event open to the public as a part of a live studio audience.  Afterwards there will be a 7 p.m. ticketed event with Lawrence Hill and a Q and A about the book.

On June 6 there will be public tours of the museum in the morning only and the celebrations will begin rain or shine from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.

A procession will start the event and those who participate will march with drummers, choirs, dignitaries, families, black leaders and black RCMP members from the burial ground to the stage area.

“The new centre beautifully captures our history and fills a gap in a story too few of us have known,” said minister of Communities, Culture and Heritage Tony Ince.  “Birchtown is a treasured centre for freedom throughout the entire African Diaspora, and I know that it will soon become a draw for visitors from all over the world.”

In 1783, over 3,000 Black Loyalists migrated from New York to Birchtown in search of freedom.  Port Roseway was the first landing site of the Loyalist fleet that carried 936 free blacks.

Eight years after their arrival, having struggled against harsh conditions and further discrimination, many of the Black Loyalists relocated from Nova Scotia to Sierra Leone.  They became known in Sierra Leone as the Nova Scotian settlers and were integral to the creation of a new nation by establishing Freetown.

TORONTO: Fatally shot Trevor Seraphine was from St. Lucia

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Police officers walk away from the apartment building where Trevor Seraphine, 16, was shot dead early Saturday morning.

MARTA IWANEK / TORONTO STAR Order this photo

Police officers walk away from the apartment building where Trevor Seraphine, 16, was shot dead early Saturday morning.

By:  Staff Reporter,  Staff Reporter, Published on Sat Mar 21 2015

A 16-year-old boy shot dead in front of an Etobicoke apartment building early Saturday morning is, according to a cousin, one of six siblings from St. Lucia whose parents are still in their island homeland.

Saturday morning, the glass entrance to 44 Willowridge Dr., the public housing building where Trevor Seraphine was fatally shot, was left riddled with four bullet holes.

Residents of the building recalled being awakened by the sound of gunshots, followed later by police sirens.

Police said the high school student was found shortly after 2 a.m. with life-threatening gunshot wounds, taken to hospital and later pronounced dead there.

Police said Trevor Seraphine, 16,  was found shortly after 2 a.m. at an apartment near Willowridge Rd. with apparent gunshot wounds.

 Police said Trevor Seraphine, 16, was found shortly after 2 a.m. at an apartment near Willowridge Rd. with apparent gunshot wounds.

Seraphine’s cousin Xabie Adjodha, 30, told the Star the boy was visiting an old girlfriend who lived in the building. He was supposed to sleep over at a nearby friend’s that night, but was unexpectedly kicked out.

Adjodha said she lived with Seraphine and his siblings across the street from the building he was shot outside for years, but they moved away recently because the area was getting “too dangerous.”

Their move came nearly eight years after Adjodha brought the siblings to Canada for a better life and to help raise Seraphine as one of her own.

“I was the one helping feed him and bringing him to school. I love this kid,” she said, before breaking down in tears. “I took them from their house and one of them died.”

As soon as she heard of his death, she said, she called Seraphine’s parents in St. Lucia. The news shook Seraphine’s mother, who “ran out of the house screaming and no one knew where she went.”

Adjodha said she is helping to arrange visas for the family to come to Canada to honour Seraphine at a funeral, for which she has started a crowdfunding campaign on gofundme.com.

She said she can’t believe someone would try to hurt her cousin, a boy she described as “always smiling.”

“He would give you that shy smirk,” she recalled, noting that he often made videos of himself rapping, but was too shy to show them off in person. “Everyone knew Trevor could make you happy or make you laugh.”

Most of his days were spent at North Albion Collegiate Institute, where Adjodha said he was a “quiet” student, who had big dreams of becoming an engineer.

Police release image of two suspects in Trevor Seraphine homicide

Seraphine, 17, was shot multiple times in Etobicoke on Saturday morning

CBC News Posted: Mar 22, 2015 2:29 PM ET Last Updated: Mar 23, 2015 11:58 AM ET

Trevor Seraphine, 17, was shot and killed in Toronto early on March 21, 2015.Trevor Seraphine, 17, was shot and killed in Toronto early on March 21, 2015. (Facebook)

Investigators have released an image of two suspects sought in the killing of a Toronto high-school student in Etobicoke this weekend.

Toronto police were called to the scene of a shooting outside 44 Willowridge Rd., just after 2 a.m. on Saturday.

Race card dismissed by Ontario court

Ontario court dismisses claim that gun conviction resulted from racial profiling

By: Diana Mehta, The Canadian Press

Posted: 11:55 AM | Comments: 1 | Last Modified: 2:25 PM

Richard Steele is seen in Toronto on Thursday Nov. 27, 2014. Steele argued unsuccessfully before Ontario’s top court that his gun-offence conviction was the result of racial profiling. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel

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Richard Steele is seen in Toronto on Thursday Nov. 27, 2014. Steele argued unsuccessfully before Ontario’s top court that his gun-offence conviction was the result of racial profiling. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Colin Perkel

TORONTO – Ontario’s highest court dismissed an appeal Monday from a man who argued his gun offence convictions were the result of racial profiling.

Richard Steele had argued he was a victim of “driving while black.”

He was convicted in October 2010 of concealing a loaded handgun under the front passenger seat of his mother’s car after being pulled over in Hamilton.

His lawyers argued at the Ontario Court of Appeal that the judge at Steele’s trial erred in failing to properly consider evidence of racial profiling.

The appeal court dismissed Steele’s appeal, finding his charter rights were not infringed.

“There is no basis to interfere with the trial judge’s factual conclusion that the stop and search were not racially motivated,” the panel of three judges found. “The convictions were supported by the evidence and were not unreasonable.”

Steele’s lawyer expressed disappointment at the ruling.