On Saturday the Green Party will join community groups, human rights campaigners and local organisations on the Community Pride Parade as tens of thousands of people are predicted to pour into Brighton and Hove this weekend.
Green Party Co-leader and Brighton Pavilion MP Caroline Lucas, who will be marching with the Green bloc on Saturday said:
“Pride is an opportunity to both celebrate Brighton and Hove’s LGBTQIA+ community and to stand united in support of everyone’s rights – regardless of their sexuality, gender identity or background. I am incredibly proud to represent a city that champions true equality and hope that in the year ahead we can together do even more to eliminate the discrimination that can still make LGBTQIA+ people’s lives more difficult.”
Convenor of the Green Group of Councillors Phélim Mac Cafferty who will lead the Green bloc said:
“This weekend is Pride and Greens will once again march with all those who stand up for equality and liberation, as we come together to celebrate our LGBT community.
“This year is also the 40th anniversary of the iconic rainbow flag designed by artist Gilbert Baker. Rooted in activism, this celebrated symbol was first flown at San Francisco’s Pride march in 1978. Following the tragic assassination of the first openly gay US politician Harvey Milk, demand for the flags soared.“Pride sees the city decorated in rainbow flags yet despite progress, we know that there is still much work to do.
“One in four LGBT people have experienced violent hate crime and homophobia is legitimised in government with the stridently homophobic DUP, who have blocked equal marriage in Northern Ireland. The Home Office continues its policy of creating a ‘hostile environment’ for migrants which has in turn grown LGBT prejudice.“As we celebrate the progress made for LGBT equality, we are reminded by the rainbow flag in its 40th year that it is the dedication of campaigners and courage of communities, refusing to be silent, that has made progress on LGBT rights possible. Greens will continue to campaign for an end to the ‘hostile environment’ policy of this Conservative Government that punishes those already vulnerable for who they love. We will campaign until we have lasting equality both here and abroad. I wish everyone a safe, happy and sustainable Pride.”
Keith Taylor, Green Party MEP for the South East said:
“As a Brighton resident and former city councillor, I know just how much effort goes into making Pride possible. I want to extend my fullest support to each and every one of you. It’s the wonderful organisers, volunteers, local businesses, sponsors, artists, charities and attendees that always make Pride such a fabulous event.
The UK has made great strides in progress for LGBTQIA+ rights, but there is still work to be done towards achieving equality for all when just 46% of the community feel comfortable being gay in the UK.
As a member of Parliament’s cross-party Intergroup for LGBT rights, and I will do all I can to defend human rights and ensure that we keep making progress, in Brighton and Hove and beyond.
I can’t make it this year, but I hope that the pride truly is a riot of colour. It is visible and a joyous celebration of love, life, equality and diversity.”