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Nottinghamshire Pride 2020

Saturday 25 July is Nottinghamshire Pride. It’s going to be different this year, as the coronavirus pandemic has forced the event online. But it’s still a time to celebrate, and to remember the importance and significance of Pride.

The history of Pride

While Pride is a joyful occasion, it began as a response to intolerance and discrimination. In June 1969 there was a police raid on the Stonewall Inn, a gay bar in New York. Raids were not unusual, but people had had enough. Hundreds resisted arrest and fought against police oppression. Thousands of people returned the next night to continue the protest, which lasted six days.

The following year, the anniversary of the Stonewall riots was marked by further demonstrations. Over time, the anniversary has become the Pride we know today, with celebrations across the globe.

Why Pride is so important

As well as an opportunity for the LGBT+ community to get together and have fun, Pride has a serious side. Parades promote a sense of community, the visibility of LGBT+ people and provides a focal point to campaigns against discrimination

The UK provides one of the highest degrees of liberty in the world for LGBT+ communities. But that doesn’t mean discrimination and prejudice doesn’t exist. In a Stonewall survey in 2017, one in five LGBT people said that they experienced a hate crime or incident because of their sexual orientation or gender identity in the last 12 months.

It’s also important to remember that in many countries being gay is still against the law, and in many more it is still absolutely legal to discriminate against someone for their sexuality.

Coronavirus has had a huge effect on the daily lives of everyone in the UK, including the LGBT+ community. The closure of meeting places such as clubs and support groups can lead to loneliness for those who lack a support network. Some may find themselves in lockdown with family members who are unaccepting of their sexuality.

LGBT+ life in Nottingham

Nottingham is one of the UK's most LGBT+ friendly cities. We have a great variety of LGBT+ friendly bars and clubs and a vibrant LGBT+ history. This includes the first officially licensed gay club, the first professor of Gay and Lesbian Studies, the first trade union LGBT support group and the first permanent rainbow crossing – sponsored by Nottingham City Homes, Robin Hood Energy and Nottingham Together.

The No Place for Hate campaign includes a charter supported by hundreds of organisations in Nottingham, all promoting the campaign to reinforcing the message that hate crime will not be tolerated here and that there are serious consequences to offensive behaviour.

At Nottingham City Homes we’re committed to celebrating the diversity of both our staff and the communities we serve. Chief Executive Nick Murphy said: “Nottingham City Homes was named as one of the most inclusive employers in Britain by lesbian, gay, bi and trans equality charity Stonewall. Nottinghamshire Pride is a really important occasion for the LGBT+ community. We love supporting it every year, and last year sponsored the UK’s first permanent rainbow crossing with Nottingham Together. We look forward to getting involved in Virtual Pride, and hope that next year we can all meet up again and make the celebrations bigger and better than ever.”

Nottinghamshire Pride celebrations in 2020

Nottinghamshire Pride will take place online on Saturday 25 July between 7pm and 9pm. The event will include a line-up of performers and interviews. Read more on their website and Facebook page.

Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Integrated Care System partners are also hosting a a Virtual Pride Extravaganza on Wednesday 29 July from 12pm to 1.30pm. Read more on their website.

If you need support, visit the Notts LGBT+ Network website.