Take Pledge Against R-Word

By Ron Fanfair, Toronto Police Service Published: 10:07 a.m. October 3, 2014

Officers took the pledge to erase the R-word from their vocabulary.

A man in TPS uniform with a group of people in two rows, some kneeling, others wearing medals
Superintendent Bryce Evans takes photos with Special Olympians and Yellowcard ambassadors

Calling someone a "retard" is hurtful and demoralising, particularly for individuals with disabilities.

It's the reason that Motionball launched the Yellowcard campaign to eliminate the use of the R-word on October 1 in downtown Toronto.

Motionball is a non-profit organization that builds awareness and raises funds for the Special Olympics Canada Foundation (SOCF), targeting a “next generation” of supporters – Canadian professionals.

Canadians are being encouraged to sign on to the Yellowcard website and take up the challenge to jettison the R-word from their vocabulary. #NoGoodWay is the Twitter hashtag to make people aware there is no reasonable use the R-word in any conversation.

The Toronto Police Service supports the Yellowcard Campaign

The Toronto Police Service, which has supported Special Olympics over the years, has embraced the Yellowball campaign.

“The use of that word, even in a casual conversation, is a form of bullying against those with intellectual disabilities,” said the Service’s Special Olympics torch run coordinator Detective Michael Puterbaugh. “We are encouraging our members to go online and take the pledge. We also want them to know that if they are around people who are using the R-word, they should caution them with a yellow card.”

Superintendent Bryce Evans, the Special Olympics Ontario Law Enforcement Torch Run co-chair for the Service, attended the yellowcard campaign launch at SpeakEasy 21 to lend his support.

Two men in TPS uniform holding a large yellow board framing them in the photo with the words #NoGoodWay and "I took the pledge to become a Yellowcard ambassador"
Constables Mark Oatley-Willis and Mark Fennell take the Yellowcard pledge at the launch event
TPS crest watermark