On the 1st July 1972, London held the first official UK Gay Pride Rally, this was on the anniversary, this date was chosen as it was the closest Saturday to the anniversary of the Stonewall Riots of 1969. A protest that changed riots for the LGBTQ+ community in America and worldwide.
Pride month is not just simply about celebrating the LGBTQ+ community however it is about teaching tolerance, education in pride history and continuing to move forward in equality. It is also about coming together in love and friendship to celebrate how far the LGBTQ+ rights have come and what changes still need to made to ensure full equality.
As a law firm, we at Alison Law Solicitors are aware of the discriminatory laws that have previous been in place that have prohibited the LGBTQ+ community to marry, adopt, and even just be in a relationship. In fact prior to the Sexual Offences Act in 1967 it was illegal to engage in homosexual acts in England and Wales. In 2016, individuals serving in the military were allowed to be open about their sexuality and in 2004, the introduction of civil partnerships were introduced which led to same-sex marriage in 2014.
However there is still a way to go with the National LGBT Survey of July 2018 showing that at least 2 in 5 respondents had experienced an incident because they were LGBT in the 12 months leading up to the survey and more than two thirds of LGBT respondents stating that they avoid holding hands with a same sex partner out of fear of getting a negative reaction from others.
It is because of this knowledge that we know it is vital to ensure that regardless of their LGTBQ+ status not only is everyone treated equally and with respect but that we show our support openly.
Global Pride Day this year will be celebrated on the 27th June with the theme being Visibility, Unity and Equality. Pride is usually celebrated with lots of parades and marches however in light of the pandemic and with social distancing still being in place, things will be a little different this year and will be celebrated through live streams of concerts and showcases.