Windsor Pride Opens Doors At New Home

The Windsor Pride Community, Education and Resource Centre has a new place to call home.

The organization was evicted from the Pelissier Street parking garage in late 2016 when city council voted to convert the ground floor commercial units to more parking spaces.

Pride's new headquarters can be found at the corner of Ouellette Ave and Elliot Street West in downtown Windsor — a location Executive Director Crystal Fach is calling a "game changer."

She says having a safe place to go is a must.

"It's a bright space and it's very visible which is what we need. We need people to know that we're here and that we exist, but at the same time it's also a safe space that's off a side street so that folks that don't necessarily want to be seen can just deke in the door. It's really open and airy and it's bright and it's welcoming and it's our home and we're really, really excited about it."

Derrick Biso is a member of the pride community and says it acts as a second home for many.

"There's a meeting room. There's a den. There's a kitchen. So it's much more warm, the sunlight coming in, it's also visible which I think is very, very important. So we didn't know where we would end up when we were being evicted, but I think we've definitely won out in finding a place that I think will provide us a lot of growth and a lot of opportunity."

Biso says having a place like this is going to save lives.

"Having a place that says, "Hey, you're OK, you're normal", I think that is so fundamental to the health and wellbeing of the entire community. So this is going to save lives. This is going to help people find themselves and affirm themselves and grow earlier. So they're not going to struggle as long and they don't have to hide."

A grand re-opening was held Wednesday at the new location at 810 Ouellette Ave.

The centre is open Monday to Friday from 10am to 6pm.

 

— with files from AM800's Kristylee Varley