For the past two years, ever since its start in Vancouver, the Safe Place program has been making its way through the province, and now, it’s finally in Chilliwack.
Originating in Seattle, the Safe Place program offers members of the LGBTQ2S+ community shelter if they’re feeling at risk or unsafe. And not just any shelter, each Safe Place must be welcoming, safe, and have the ability to provide safety until the police can arrive.
“Everyone should feel safe,” said Cpl. Mike Rail, spokesperson for the Upper Fraser Valley Regional Detachment (UFVRD). “Promoting acceptance and inclusion while ensuring the safety of community is a priority of the Chilliwack RCMP.”
With that in mind, local RCMP are aligning with businesses, schools, or any other institution willing to participate in the program, to spread rainbow decals across the city, which will let passersby know what locations are part of Safe Place.
”The Book Man has always had rainbow flags in the corners of our front windows to indicate that we are a business that values inclusion and acceptance,” said owner Amber Price.
“This new program allows us the opportunity to formalize that commitment to being a safe, respectful space. The Safe Place program is a powerful indication that higher authorities recognize the importance of protecting formerly marginalized members of our community.”
To include your business or association in the Safe Place program, and earn your rainbow decal, contact Constable Isabelle Christensen at 604-393-3000.