Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Campaigners Gather to Fight Birmingham Pride March Ban

LGBTQBirmingham Pride will not have its traditional march and parade this year as a result of a lack of agreement over traffic restrictions. Some see this as a cynical effort to allay the fears of residents as the gay village is turned into a posh housing estate. Some see it as another nail in the coffin for the notion of Pride as a political event.

The University of Birmingham LGBTQ Association believe “Birmingham Pride” and its parade to be the most important event of the Birmingham LGBT calendar. They see Pride as a protest. The LGBT community do face social inequality and discrimination on a daily basis and feel it still has not achieved the aims of the Queer Liberation Movement of the sixties which was recreated in last year’s parade. The Association feels that Birmingham Pride will be incomplete without its Parade and risks forgeting its purpose, not only this, but it is also confined solely to the gay village: out of sight and sound of the heterosexual world.

The association, like so many others, declares itself unaware of the complete reasons for the cancellation of the parade, but believes it is not too late to host a simple march taking the aims of pride back to its grassroots. This pride march is possible through the use of the ‘Human Rights Act of 2001’ stating a person’s right to peaceful protest. The parade needs no budget and this way needs no permission from the council.

The association is therefore calling for a meeting to discuss plans to organise a parade. This is to be held at Nightingales on Wednesday 14th May at 7pm. If you are interested in attending this meeting, and being involved in the parade march, or for any further information, contact the University of Birmingham LGBTQ Association by email (lgbtq@guild.bham.ac.uk) or by phone (07871899155 – Holly Pike (Chair), 07712588808 – Emma O’Dwyer (LGBTQ Officer))

for more information about the association, please visit: www.lgbtq.co.uk

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