Although many organizers canceled pride parades and events around the globe due to the pandemic, Pride is still here, and it’s queer. It’s only moved online.
In June 2019, over five million people participated in the largest international pride parade in history. The events celebrated the 50th anniversary of the famous 1969 Stonewall riots, which effectively signed the inception of the LGBT rights movement.
This year, instead, the Pride Month has been very different: Due to the coronavirus pandemic, hundreds of events have been canceled around the world, and we will surely miss the colorful and boastful parades and people flocking to the streets.
Yet, InterPride and the European Pride Organisers Association, two leading international Pride networks, are teaming up with institutions across the five continents to bring everyone together for the digital Global Pride 2020. The event is scheduled for Saturday, June 27, and is expected to attract around 300 million viewers. The show will be live-streamed for free on the Global Pride website, on YouTube, and on other platforms to be announced.
“For millions of people around the globe, Pride is their one opportunity each year to come together and feel a part of a community, to feel loved, connected, and to know they aren’t alone. It’s essential this year that as Pride organizers, we ensure there is still the opportunity to connect, even if we are connecting from home,” said Kristine Garina, president of the European Pride Organisers Association.
World leaders such as Canadian Prime Minister Justine Trudeau, current Presidential Democratic candidate Joe Biden, and US House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi have been recently added to the line-up of Global Pride, together with a plethora of Grammy Award artists and special guests.
Among these, personalities and queer icons of the caliber of Laverne Cox, Village People, Spice Girls’ Mel C, Kesha, Pussy Riot, Deborah Cox, Bob the Drag Queen, Courtney Act, Olivia-Newton John, Mary Lambert, and many more have been announced as part of this shiny program. Plus, the event will amplify black voices as the organizers are working closely with the #BlackLivesMatter movement.
“We need community and connection more than ever,” said J. Andrew Baker, co-president of InterPride. “This gives us an opportunity to both connect and celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community’s resilience in the face of this pandemic and the true spirit of Pride.”
Additionally, Global Pride 2020 is a breakthrough for many LGBT folks around the world since even people from countries plagued by homophobia will be able to attend through their devices and free themselves from social stigma for a day. Plus, given the online nature of Global Pride, the happening will eliminate barriers such as disability, location, or poverty, which often prevent people from taking part in pride events.