Inclusivity and Pride
This blog post was written by Taylor Roberson, United Way of King County marketing program manager.
Hi! I don’t represent everyone or every issue. I’m just me: Taylor R. I’ve lived in a different country, traveled to a few continents, celebrated Pride in four different states and the UK, and wrote a blog for Pride month.
And you know what they say: If you don’t have anything nice to say …
Pride is a joyful celebration of all the beautiful identities of the LGBTQ+ community. Summer spaces are created across the nation for people to be their wholes selves, to dance and march in the streets and declare: We are here!
If there was ever a group positioned to bring people together it would be the queer community. Its very name alludes to inclusivity. And I believe it can be done, but intentionality is needed.
When I first began attending Pride over 15 years ago in the Midwest, I assumed that Pride was the future, a space where people were accepted for themselves. I didn’t notice the microaggressions of men helping themselves to touch women’s chests because “Honey, it’s okay, I’m gay.”
It was only recently that I discovered that gay night clubs and dance clubs have been rumored to exclude women. Or what courage it might take for a transgender woman to feel comfortable entering a safe space for women of color.
I think we can be intentional about representation of the more than 50 gender identities during Pride month and extending joy to others. Many organizations have taken steps to do so.
Seattle Pride has rightfully been deemed the largest Pride parade in the Pacific Northwest with more than 250 organizations walking the 2023 parade! This year, smaller organizations who often cannot afford the lavish fee to participate in the parade rallied sponsors to be more inclusive and fully cover constituent fees.
It was just in 2018 that black and brown stripes were added to Pride flags recognizing the disparities in Black and brown people living in this county and acknowledging intersectionality, that one person could be gay, Black, a woman, transgender and, in turn, meet unwarranted challenges.
I think we can be intentional about representation of the more than 50 gender identities during Pride month and extending joy to others. Many organizations have taken steps to do so.Taylor Roberson, United Way of King County marketing program manager
In 2023, Pride inclusivity is more important than ever.
There have been more than 525 state bills introduced that attack the LGBTQ+ community—including 220 of those that target the transgender community. As of today, more than 70 of those total bills have become law.
Then there are Texas and Florida, which are banning educators from talking about LGBTQ+ issues, teaching Black history and banning gender-affirming care.
The good news is that for every Texas or Florida, there’s a Michigan, which became the 22nd state to sign LGBTQ+ non-discrimination protections into law.
As you gear up to celebrate what is arguably the most colorful time of the year, I challenge us all to actively practice inclusivity.
- Attend two or more Pride events.
- Invite a friend to your favorite event and welcome their plus one.
- Spread the word about the various Pride celebrations on your social channels.
- Sign a petition or two.
- Stay connected to community. Check out the United Way of King County’s Community Engagement Calendar.
Also, check out other local LGBTQ+ events: