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TTC hosts 10th annual Underground Freedom Train Ride

On Sunday, July 31, the TTC is supporting the Blackhurst Cultural Centre (formerly known as A Different Booklist Cultural Centre) to host the tenth annual midnight Underground Freedom Train Ride to commemorate Emancipation Day on Aug. 1.

The Freedom Train Ride is symbolic of the role the Underground Railroad has played in Canadian history. This year, the Emancipation Day Freedom Ride will be an in-person event after two years of virtual events.

"I am pleased to see the annual Freedom Train Ride is back in person this year to mark Emancipation Day. Every year, when we mark this ride we are acknowledging the history of the Underground Railway and the role it played in our city and country. I want to thank everyone for helping put this event together. I encourage residents to take time during Emancipation Month to learn more about the history of slavery and our ongoing work to confront anti-Black racism," said Mayor John Tory.

"The TTC is proud to be a part of the annual underground Freedom Train Ride, which marks an important part of Canadian history," said TTC Chair Jaye Robinson. "Observing Emancipation Day is just one way we are advancing our broader commitment to building a more equitable, inclusive and welcoming transit system for everyone."

"Emancipation Day is an important opportunity to recognize the dangerous journey through the Underground Railroad that formerly enslaved people took to reach Canada," said TTC CEO Rick Leary. "I want to thank all our partners and employees whose efforts have contributed to this special event."

The in-person event begins at Union Station and concludes at Sheppard West Station. In past years, it has attracted more than 1,000 participants. This year, the in-person commemoration will feature music, singing, drumming, moments of reflection and remarks by TTC Chief Diversity and Culture Officer Keisha Campbell.

The Underground Freedom Train Ride is open to the public.

When: Sunday, July 31/Monday, Aug. 1, 2022.
Where: Line 1, Union to Sheppard West stations.
Start time: Remarks begin at 11 p.m.; ceremonial train departs Union Station at approximately 11:45 p.m.; and arrives at Sheppard West Station at approximately 12:10 a.m. 

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