Council makes video to show solidarity with LGBT+ community for Pride weekend

PUBLISHED: 17:01 26 June 2020 | UPDATED: 17:01 26 June 2020

People take part in the Pride in London parade, which was cancelled this year. Picture: John Stillwell / PA Images

People take part in the Pride in London parade, which was cancelled this year. Picture: John Stillwell / PA Images

PA Wire/PA Images

Barking and Dagenham Council has released a video to show support for the LGBT+ community ahead of the cancelled Pride in London event.

The council was set to attend Pride in London for the fourth consecutive year tomorrow (June 27) before the famous parade was called off because of the coronavirus pandemic.

It would have been the third time in a row the council had entered a float, after being one of only three boroughs to do so last year.

Since the start of June, the rainbow flag has been flying high over Barking Town Hall to mark Pride Month.

And while the parade isn’t going ahead, the council recorded a video to ensure there’s a strong display of solidarity and visibility for LGBT+ people and allies to the cause of advancing equality.

Councillor Lynda Rice, cabinet member for equalities and diversity, said it was disappointing that Pride in London had to be cancelled, but the day couldn’t go by without a show of support.

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Cllr Rice said: “We are more committed than ever to supporting our LGBT+ community.

“For many, the lockdown has been an immensely difficult time, cut off from support networks and, in some cases, LGBT+ people struggling with unsupportive or even hostile home environments.

“They need to know that support is there for them, as we celebrate the diversity of the LGBT+ community.”

Community partners, councillors, the council’s LGBT+ staff forum and members of the Flipside youth group came together for the video.

The council’s director of policy and participation and LGBT+ staff forum chair Mark Tyson said: “We know there’s loads of people in our community who are struggling through lockdown, with being accepted, being safe and being themselves.

“That means the fight for equality is more important than ever and so is the sense of solidarity as a community.”

Matty May from Studio3 Arts said: “Although we can’t all get together this year, Pride can never be cancelled.

“Special solidarity to anyone who is in a situation where they can’t be themselves at the moment.”

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