- Two more nooses have been found at a hospital construction site in Toronto, according to EllisDon, the Ontario, Canada-based company heading the project.
- The nooses were on the jobsite at Michael Garron Hospital, CityNews reported, where two of the racist symbols were found this summer. Toronto police are investigating all of the incidents.
- Company leaders plan to hold a full-site stand down today to address the project team and "condemn these actions,” EllisDon spokesperson Dustin Luchka told CityNews. The firm will also provide access to counseling for any team members who need mental health support and guidance.
Since the beginning of June, what appear to be five nooses were discovered on construction jobsites in Toronto, according to CBC Radio-Canada, including two on the Michael Garron Hospital site (shown above), which is undergoing a campuswide redevelopment that includes the construction of two new facilities, new underground parking and renovations to existing spaces.
One of the nooses was found at the Eglinton Crosstown light-rail transit (LRT) public-private partnership (P3) project in Toronto, which is valued at $9 billion Canadian dollars ($6.8 billion). Crosstlinx Transit Solutions, the Eglinton P3 consortium that includes ACS-Dragados, Aecon, EllisDon and SNC-Lavalin, told CBC that the noose was found near where it is building one of the new system's stations.
Local police are investigating the incident and whoever is found responsible will be banned from the jobsite, according to Crosslinx, in addition to possibly facing criminal charges.
This summer saw an uptick in the number of racist incidents on U.S. and Canadian jobsites reported to construction company management and local law enforcement authorities. In addition to the Toronto incidents, ropes fashioned in the shape of nooses were found on construction sites in Las Vegas, Baltimore and Portland, Oregon.
In late August, EllisDon announced the formation of its Alliance of Black Employee Experience and Leadership (ABEEL). According to the group's leader, Samuel Ajobo, an estimator with the firm, the alliance will work to:
- Develop metrics to ensure all marginalized groups are fairly treated in area of wage, promotions and mentorships.
- Enhance the awareness of social injustice through project site visits, town hall meetings and workshops.
- Ensure that there is a platform for all of the voices at EllisDon to be heard across the company.
- Empower institutions such as schools and marginalized neighborhoods.