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Over 100 Pride events have been cancelled because of coronavirus

Over 100 Pride events have been cancelled because of coronavirus

YY!

Including London, LA, Sao Paulo, and more

As we begin week two or three of social distancing and self-isolation – depending on when you started – it’s no longer much of a surprise to hear that a public event is cancelled. Last week, we heard that Glastonbury was no longer happening; on Friday, in the UK, Boris Johnson announced that all restaurants, cafes, bars and clubs must temporarily close, and later threatened total lockdown; and over the weekend, the pressure mounted for the cancellation of the 2020 Olympics.

Still, it comes as a huge blow to the LGBTQ+ community that, as of today, over 100 global Prides have been cancelled or postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.

The European Pride Organisers Association (EPOA) have created an ongoing and up-to-date list of the Pride events that are impacted. It contains dozens of Prides around the UK, from Pride In London, which is postponed, to Trans Pride Scotland and Trans Pride Brighton, both cancelled, plus many smaller events in regional or rural areas where there are no permanent queer spaces. 

The list also includes LA Pride and Sao Paulo Pride, as well as Pride events in countries with a generally hostile climate for LGBTQ+ people, such as Pink Dot in Singapore and Pride in Kraków.

“Every Pride organiser in the world has a story of someone whose life was changed by coming to a Pride, a story of someone who for the first time felt love and a sense of community,” said Kristine Garina, President of the European Pride Organisers Association. “It’s heartbreaking that so many people will miss out on that this year, but we’re determined that Pride will continue and will change many more lives in the future.”

Those feeling concerned about the cancellation of a local Pride should reach out to local LGBTQ+ organisations, say EPOA, and keep an eye on the EPOA website for rescheduled events.

“We recognise that for many people their local Pride is their only chance to really feel part of a community, and so the cancellation or postponement of Pride is a real blow,” the EPOA told YY. “We’d recommend people contact their local LGBTI support group, or national organisations such as Switchboard. The lack of Pride this year shouldn’t mean people feel lonely or isolated.” 

If you want to support LGBTQ+ people at this time you can volunteer to telefriend elderly LGBTQ+ people through Opening Doors London (some other countries have similar initiatives), or donate to the Outside Project which supports LGBTQ+ people experiencing homelessness. If you’re missing queer socialising or looking for other ways to inspire feelings of pride, you can visit a virtual queer house party or join a queer book club, explore YY’s archives on queer culture or read about queer heroes on Queer Bible, and also catch up on some of the films that were in this year’s – sadly cancelled – BFI Flare, from home

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