Little Mix’s Jade Thirlwall says Manchester Pride was ‘one of the best experiences of her life’
Little Mix singer Jade Thirlwall has spoken out about being a proud LGBT ally after taking part in Manchester Pride.
She delivered a speech at a youth pride event with the charity Stonewall over the weekend.
“It was really emotional actually. I feel like as someone in the public eye and as an artist it’s our duty to raise awareness.
“It’s my first ever Pride and it’s been one of the best experiences of my life seeing how much it means to some of the young people, who might have struggled coming out.
“Seeing them here today being proud of who they are is amazing.”
Thirlwall added that Little Mix has a strong LGBT fanbase, saying it was “important for us to encourage them to be who they are.”
Conan Smith, 22, decided to come out in a Facebook post, adding he had been inspired by the singer.
“I’m gay! This is not something I had to do but something I wanted to do,” Smith wrote on Facebook.
“The reason for me doing this status is because I finally feel that’s time that I no longer have to hide something that is such a huge part of my life,” he added.
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Smith later shared a screenshot of his initial Facebook post on Twitter.
“So last night I decided to finally come out as gay. It was honestly the scariest but most amazing thing ever,” he wrote. “The support has been incredible.”
Smith also added he had been inspired by Little Mix’s Jade, writing: “#JadeThirlwall from @LittleMix is a huge inspiration to me and I am so thankful for the platform she gives to the #LGBT community.”
Smith’s bravery was rewarded, because the Little Mix star caught a glimpse of his tweet and personally congratulated him.
Thirlwall responded in a tweet from the official Little Mix account: “You should be so, so proud of yourself. And I feel so humbled and honoured to have a played a part in your personal journey.”