Pride in London will require all groups to pledge their support for LGBT+ rights and disavow racism – after UKIP controversy last year.
Pride organisers faced criticism last year when they blocked the UK Independence Party’s LGBT+ group from marching citing “safety” concerns, after protests over the party’s anti-LGBT manifesto commitments.
Despite the ban, PinkNews followed a contingent of UKIP LGBT+ members who flouted the ban on the day, marching without incident.
Ahead of this year’s Pride march, which is taking place on Saturday June 25, the organisers announced a “new application process” following “consultation about potential for exclusion of groups from the Parade”.
Under the new process, all Parade groups are required to sign up to an affirmation that they will uphold the “values” of Pride – and will not be allowed to march without doing so.
The statement says:
I/We confirm that I/we uphold the values of the global Pride movement of equality and human rights, acceptance and inclusion of all, regardless of race, disability, gender, gender expression, sexual identity, sexual orientation, HIV status, age, faith or belief, trade union membership. political affiliation, marital or civil partnership status, nationality, refugee or asylum seeker status.
I/We also confirm that I am/we are taking part in Pride in London in the spirit of collaboration and mutual support to help promote and further the cause of LGBT+ liberation and campaign for equality for all.
I/We understand that the following could exclude me/us from taking part in Pride in London:
· Official statements from the group, its leaders or representatives (including those of a parent organisation) that are homophobic, biphobic, transphobic, sexist, disablist, racist or in any other way discriminatory in intent or impact; and/or
· Behaviour by group members at past Pride in London events or Pride events elsewhere that resulted in significant disruption of the event or set out to offend participants or observers through its incompatibility with any of the values of Pride as set out in this statement; and/or
· Statements of intention to disrupt Pride events or undertake actions that would be incompatible with the values of Pride as set out in this statement.
I/We also understand that, if our inclusion is challenged on any of the above grounds, the independent Community Advisory Board (the CAB) of Pride in London may undertake a review (which may include the calling of oral evidence) before advising the Board of Directors (the Board) of Pride in London on whether we should be permitted to take part in the Parade or any other Pride in London event.
I/We have explained the nature and content of this affirmation to all those who will be participating as part of our group and they have agreed that it binds us jointly and severally
Chair of the independent Community Advisory Board Abby Chicken said: “We are very grateful to the 134 people and organisations who took time to help us refine our proposal for management of a very difficult issue; the balancing of the vital importance of inclusion with the need to ensure the event meets the high standards of mutual respect and support and promotion of the cause of LGBT+ equality and freedom that we rightly expect.
“We have recommended to Pride in London an approach that will allow us to strike that balance in a clear and transparent way. I am grateful to all the groups and individuals who took the time to respond to our consultation in the autumn.”
Chair of London LGBT+ Community Pride, organisers of Pride in London Michael Salter-Church MBE said: “Last year’s Pride in London was the biggest ever, providing a high profile platform for community groups to reach the LGBT+ community and wider society, campaigning on issues of importance to them.
“The nature of Pride as an inclusive event, open to all means that there will often be areas of disagreement about how best to proceed in the interests of the community and the future of Pride.
“Our adoption of the process put forward by the CAB will ensure that we have a forum for managing disagreements in an open and transparent way.
“I thank the CAB for their hard work, I know it hasn’t been easy.
“Pride is such an important moment of visibility, campaigning and shared strength; it is also a time when we join together to celebrate our successes and support fellow LGBT+ people wherever they are. Our strength is in solidarity and unity.”