(NEW YORK) — Security is being ramped up at LGBT nightclubs and events across the country in the wake of the deadly Orlando nightclub shooting.
There will be extra police officers at the Chicago pride festival this weekend, the CPD told ABC News, while officers in New York City have increased their presence all week.
Security is also a priority at clubs closer to the scene of the Sunday shooting that resulted in 50 deaths at Pulse nightclub.
At Southern Nights, another LGBT club in Orlando, management has implemented new security measures that include two police officers with their cars positioned in front of the club every night, a private security company hired to handle metal detectors, wands and pat downs, and a ban on bringing any bags into the club.
“Southern Nights has been a home to the LGBT Community for 40 years,” the club said on its Facebook post. “It is, and will continue to be a place for all people to feel comfortable and always welcome. We promise that we will do everything in our power to keep it this way.”
While Orlando is reeling from what the FBI has now ruled a hate crime and the largest mass shooting in recent U.S. history, there have been other incidents at gay bars in New York where references were made to Orlando.
“In New York City, we responded to two incidents of violence where LGBT bars were targeted and references to Orlando were made,” said Shelby Chestnut, director of community organizing and public advocacy at the New York City Anti-Violence Project.
She also noted that there was more than one instance where people reportedly found handwritten notes on their cars that featured “threatening language and threats targeting LGBT people.”
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