TORONTO, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 12/11/15 -- Protesters gathered in front of the Trump International Hotel & Tower Toronto Friday afternoon, protesting Donald Trump's recent anti-Muslim statements and celebrating Toronto's diversity and inclusiveness.
"We can't allow hateful anti-Muslim comments like Trump's to go unchallenged," said Abu Azam, a Houseperson at the Hilton Hotel Downtown Toronto. "As a Muslim myself, I am encouraged to see Canadians from all walks of life standing up to reject Trump's hateful, vile bigotry."
The rally comes a day after Toronto opened its arms to the first of thousands of Syrian families arriving in Toronto. "This is the kind of country I came to be part of," added Azam.
Members of UNITE HERE Local 75, the hospitality workers' union representing workers at the Trump Toronto, hosted a spirited rally at the hotel in August after Trump made comments deriding Mexicans as "drug traffickers and rapists."
"Yesterday, Trump wanted to ban people from a particular country. Now he is targeting members of a particular faith. We know where this kind of thinking is headed. We all have a responsibility to stop this hatred in its tracks," said Lis Pimentel, President of UNITE HERE Local 75.
"What everyone here understands - but what Donald Trump and his supporters fail to recognize - is that the experiences we go through in immigrating to Canada make us strong, resourceful people. And we are so much stronger as a city when we recognize the experience that people of different national origins bring to our community," said Solomon Asfaha, an organizer with UNITE HERE Local 75.
The majority of Toronto hotel workers have immigrated to Canada. "This rally is larger than Trump," said John Cartwright, President of the Toronto and York Region Labour Council. "This is about sending a message loud and clear that we will not tolerate hate speech, anti-immigrant or anti-Muslim sentiment."
Donald Trump is the CEO of Trump Toronto Hotel Management Corp., the Delaware-registered company hired to manage the operations of the hotel and residences at the Trump International Hotel & Tower Toronto.