Hold Cactus Club responsible for its shameful discrimination against patrons of color

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The Cactus Club Cafe (a.k.a Cactus Club) has a well documented history of discriminating against persons of color who wish to patronize their restaurants, specifically the location based in Toronto at 77 ADELAIDE ST. W.  The most notable story comes from Marcus Stroman, a man of color and star pitcher for the Toronto Blue Jays, who tweeted his frustration back in Sept. 2017, after he and his friends were refused entry (after a stellar performance on the mound, at that), even though he had a reservation. Cactus Club reps apologized to Mr. Stroman, going so far as to "tweet" him directly.  They promised to look into the matter, and to make changes to ensure that incidents such as this didn't happen again. What resulted from their investigation?  It's hard to say, as we were unable to uncover any public communication by Cactus Club as to the issues that its investigation uncovered, nor a public declaration as to how it went about addressing these issues.

Since that time it has been discovered (reiterated, to be honest) that Cactus Club actively bars patrons of color (specifically black and brown people), and have devised methods to dissuade their patronage. These methods include: bouncers turning black patrons away at the door, telling them it's closed for a (non-existent) private function; management requesting DJs to not "cater to the Caribana crowd", which, let's face it, is comprised of mainly people of color; management instructing bouncers to limit the number of black people they let into the venue; upper management telling DJs to switch music genres, as it was getting "too dark" in the venue (presumably referencing the skin color of PAYING customers).  Cactus Club even went so far this past Caribana weekend to cancel their DJs to ensure persons of color did not frequent the venue.  The stories and accounts from everyday people go on and on.

There is a long and detailed history of eating/social establishments devising and actively using tools of discrimination, to discourage - and in essence, alienate - minorities from partaking in everyday activities such as EATING and SOCIALIZING. This behaviour falls in step with a very disturbing time in North America's history.  One would think that we'd left those days in the dust, but it's sad to realize that we are currently still living it.  I'm not interested in a tomorrow that sees the first female Prime Minister or President, but that still excludes minorities from engaging in the simplest of activities.  It just doesn't compute, and corporations big or small, need to be held to account!

This petition is meant to do the following:

  • to encourage a thorough investigation into the Cactus Club Cafe's practices, and review of its training procedures.
  • to bring about change in management, and upper management if need be, in ALL of its restaurants.
  • to make The Cactus Club review and adhere to the Human Rights Code, which specifically protects people of color when accessing services.
  • to make Cactus Club engage in the (clearly) necessary sensitivity training to prevent its staff from singling out and reducing people to the color of their skin.

Toronto is a wonderful city of many nations, cultures and ethnicities. This is what makes the city worthwhile, don't let anyone - including The Cactus Club Cafe tell you otherwise!

The Cactus Club Cafe has gotten away with its blatantly and flagrantly discriminatory practices, but I say enough is enough!  Our money is just as good as everyone else's! In the meantime, I'd like to encourage people, even those of you who have yet to experience their discrimination, to BOYCOTT this establishment.