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Sergeant Judy Nosworthy

December 15, 2009

Sergeant Judy Nosworthy, the highest-ranking LGBT cop in Canada, rose through the ranks in the Toronto Police Service from 1987, when she started as a cadet, advancing to constable and then to sergeant in 2002. In her 20 year career as a cop, Judy has become the poster child for diversity.

She is the country’s first out lesbian cop. She served as the city’s first liaison officer to gay residents since 2001 and is credited with helping Toronto gays overcome a traditional mistrust of police. In the early 90’s she was outed when an ex-lover lodged a complaint against her. The lover alleged abuse in a domestic situation – the complaint was eventually deemed vexatious and disregarded. But the incident brought Judy’s sexual orientation out in the open. Against her will, she became known as the ‘dyke’ at 52 Division. She recalls, ‘for a while, it was open season’. She was the target of homophobic harassment that ranged from derogatory remarks to vandalization of her locker. Instead of seeking cover and hiding, she decided to fight for her place at the station.

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