Toronto councillor files motion for TTC streetcars to be wrapped in Ukrainian flag

By Lucas Casaletto

One Toronto city councillor has filed a motion to have the Ukrainian flag draped over streetcars in solidarity as millions flee the eastern European country following Russia’s unprovoked invasion.

Mike Colle, city councillor representing Ward 8, Eglinton-Lawrence, filed the motion, which fellow councillor Anthony Perruzza seconded.

It asks that the council consider approving the action to wrap the flag around as many streetcars as possible while requesting corporate sponsorships to cover part of the costs.

A summary of Colle’s motion reads, “Thousands of Canadians of Ukrainian Heritage call Toronto home, and it is critical that the City of Toronto show solidarity with all Ukrainians, both here in Canada and Ukraine.”

“Toronto Transit Commission streetcars are an iconic and visible symbol in Toronto, and wrapping them in the blue and yellow Ukrainian flag would be a highly visible demonstration of support and solidarity,” it concludes.

Colle tells CityNews that it’s up to the TTC to consider how many streetcars would be covered with the flag, saying he doesn’t think the cost would be an issue.

“I am sure there would be people more than happy to step up and pay for some of these costs,” Colle said on Friday. “I just think it’s at least worth a try. We have to build the morale of people here in Toronto and in the Ukrainian community to keep on hoping and raising money for Ukraine and its cause.

“I think this would be a nice lift in their spirits at the same time, sending a strong signal that the people of Toronto are with Ukraine at this very terrible time,” Colle said.

ukraine flag

Russia’s war on Ukraine is on its ninth day. U.N. and Ukrainian officials say no radiation was released from a Russian attack at Europe’s biggest nuclear power plant. Photo courtesy: Yehor Milohrodskyi.

The TTC wouldn’t comment, telling CityNews it’s waiting for Colle’s motion to be heard.

On February 25, Mayor John Tory announced that the “Toronto Sign” would be lit in blue and yellow through the weekend in support and solidarity with the people of Ukraine.

Colle believes his motion to wrap the flags on TTC streetcars would act as a similar show of unity and accord.

“It’s not as if they’re [the TTC] saying they’re against the Russians,” Colle said.

“Ukraine needs our support, our moral support. The government of Canada is supporting them, all the NATO countries. We’re just saying we’re with the people of Ukraine. It’s not taking sides. It’s just saying we’re with you; we have to give them hope. This is just one of many ways to do that.”

Council will consider Colle’s motion on March 9.

Canada has issued several sanctions against Russia and President Vladimir Putin due to the invasion. Provincially, the Ford government directed the LCBO to remove all products produced in Russia from its shelves.

The LCBO released a statement saying it supported the decision and would be removing the products “effective immediately.”

With files from Mark Douglas of CityNews

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