InterPride, the international association of LGBTQ Pride Coordinators, held its annual MidYear meeting, in April, in Las Vegas, which will also host the Annual General Meeting in October. Leaders from all over the world converged on Sin City with one thing in mind–global change in Human Rights.
Three days of meetings found Pride Coordinators sharing information on the state of Pride in regions spanning North America and Europe. The Human Rights and Solidarity committees discussed their work in helping Prides in hostile environments and brought us up to date on conditions in other countries, where even wearing a rainbow ribbon could endanger your life. Regional conferences for Region Six (North East Regional Pride or NERP) and Region Five (Prides of the South East or POSE) emphasized educational programs around transgender issues, including the significantly higher incidence of violent acts committed against these men and women, especially when they are people of color.
Discussions were also held around the importance of being visible, wherever you can, to give courage to those who are fighting for visibility and voice. There are Prides in the United States and Canada, which are in tough environments, and EuroPride, this year held in Riga, is getting no support from the government and no guarantee of protection from the Latvian police force. Yet EuroPride continues to plan for an amazing event and could use your help in very many ways. Write a letter, send support, raise awareness: it’s all in your hands.
Want to get involved and learn more about how the Pride movement in your town changes the world? Visit www.InterPride.org for information on Prides in your area, roll up your sleeves, and volunteer. You never know where getting involved will lead.