RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — LGBTQ advocates joined Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney outside of City Hall Friday morning to raise a Pride flag in recognition of the city’s annual PrideFest weekend.
This is the first year a Pride flag has been raised at City Hall. The flag can be viewed on Broad Street.
“LGBTQ Richmonders should know that this city stands behind them,” said Mayor Stoney. “No matter who you love or how you identify, you are a valued member of our community deserving of love, support and justice.”
According to a release from the Mayor’s Office, the city chose to raise the Progress Pride Flag. This particular pride flag features black and brown stripes and the colors of the Transgender Pride flag. The variety of stripes and colors is used to “represent the necessity for champions of the LGTBTQ community to bring a racial justice, inclusive lens to the work.”
Stoney says he believes no one should be left behind. ““We chose the Progress Pride flag both for this moment and to represent our ongoing work,” said Mayor Stoney. “To build an equitable, inclusive city, we must move forward with intentional intersectionality.”
At the flag raising event, Interim Executive Director of Virginia Pride James Millner presented Virginia Pride’s annual Firework Award to Black Pride RVA. Lacette Cross and Louise “Cheezi” Farmer, founders of Black Pride RVA were in attendance to receive the award. The Firework award is given to individuals and organizations recognized as catalysts for change for the LGBTQ community. Past recipients include former Governor Terry McAuliffe, transgender activists Gavin Grimm and Zakia McKensey, Bill Harrison and Ted Lewis.
“Richmond’s LGBTQ community is tremendously grateful to the mayor, the City Council and the City of Richmond for taking this historic step of raising a Pride flag at City Hall in recognition of RVA’s PrideFest weekend,” said James Millner, Interim Executive Director of Virginia Pride. “This gesture of inclusivity sends a powerful message that this city’s LGBTQ residents and visitors are not only welcome here but are celebrated as strong and vibrant threads of the fabric of Richmond.”
The flag will fly through the end of September to close out Virginia Pride Month.
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