Pride…Inside & Out!

Pride…Inside & Out!

Pride Month is a celebration of the diversity and uniqueness of our community. It is a time of remembrance, reflection and togetherness to fight intolerance, violence and discrimination. Pride Month reminds us to build the strength to continue breaking barriers to equality and confronting all forms of discrimination year-round, not just during one month. 

Though Pride Month is celebrated globally in June to commemorate the 1969 New York Stonewall Rights and celebrate the progress toward LGBTQIA+ equality, TT Pride Month is celebrated in the month of July, dedicated to solidarity and a celebration of the achievements in the fight for equality and inclusion right here in Trinidad & Tobago. 

While there may be more positive discourse and dialogue on real, lived LGBTQIA+ experiences – which has been proven to improve the acceptance and inclusion of LGBTQIA+ people in our society – negative perceptions and misconceived notions about LGBTQIA+ people continue to pervade society. 

At least 70 countries across the world criminalise same-sex relationships, punishable by death in 11 of them. Locally, our government continues to push to uphold the antiquated laws that criminalise consensual same-sex activity. There is also a lack of documented policies for anti-discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Access to gender-affirming care and legal aid continue to be denied to transgender and gender-non-conforming people. And with negative discourse around inclusive literature and misconceived notions about what comprehensive sexuality education actually is, our fight for equality, visibility and inclusivity remains threatened by those in society who hold on to deeply ingrained and harmful social norms, misinformed religious ideologies and myopic perspectives on LGBTQIA+ people. 

Despite these challenges to livelihood, LGBTQIA+ people continue to live life authentically, loudly and proudly, demonstrating why even in the face of increased visibility efforts, the celebration of Pride Month continues to be as important and necessary as it was decades ago. 

You don’t have to be LGBTQIA+ to campaign for equal rights. LGBTQIA+ issues are human rights issues and human rights are for everyone, regardless of who you are or who you love. Whether we are directly or indirectly impacted, the pursuit of equal rights and freedoms allows many people to feel more seen and visible. Our voices matter, our stories are important, and our love is valid. 

As we enter Pride Month here in Trinidad & Tobago, we must remind ourselves that being LGBTQIA+ is more than our sexuality. It’s about freedom – freedom to recognise who we are, be who we are and love who we are without fear, restriction or explanation. You are part of a vibrant community that celebrates difference and champions diversity and inclusivity. There is purpose in your life outside of the confines of what society tells you should be.

There is still much work to be done. We are all allies in the fight for equality. Our community is stronger when we stand together in the pursuit of equality, representation and recognition. We remain committed to pushing for meaningful change and hope to one day see the full integration of acceptance, love and mutual respect for LGBTQIA+ people into our society.

We call on our LGBTQIA+ allies to continue to celebrate and uplift our diverse, intersectional community and join the fight for equity and equality. Advocate for safer spaces, safer classrooms, stronger families and empowered youth. There will come a day when bigotry and intolerance are history and we are committed to being an integral role in bringing that day closer. We must continue to work together to create safe spaces for us all – regardless of sexual identity – to exist in our society, free from harm, violence and discrimination.

Happy Pride Month, T&T! 🏳️‍🌈🏳️‍⚧️



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