LGBTQ+ Rights Veterans March Along London Pride Route To Celebrate 50th Anniversary
Twelve surviving activists from the Gay Liberation Front (GLF) marched today to mark London Pride and also celebrate its 50th anniversary.
The group, which was formed in 1970, has been credited as being the start of the modern LGBTQ+ movement in the UK and despite the official event being cancelled due to the coronavirus, activists still took to the usual route.
Peter Tatchell, who helped organise the UK's first Pride march in 1972, said: "Homophobia did not defeat us, so we're not going to let the Covid-19 pandemic stop Pride.
"We GLF veterans confronted anti-LGBT+ bigots 50 years ago. We faced down police harassment, far-right extremists and homophobic political and religious leaders.
"We are marching as Pride was planned, with face masks and social distancing."
A separate protest was going on today with demonstrators marching for the Black Trans Lives Matter cause.
Thousands of people gathered with banners which called for the protection of trans youth with some saying things like: "Black trans lives are beautiful," and "Support your sisters not just your cis-ters".
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The protest began at Hyde Park and the crowds walked through central London.
People were following the coronavirus safety guidance by wearing face masks and many carried flowers, at the request of the organisers.
Mr Thatchell went on: "We support Black Lives Matter and the just demands of black communities, just as we did in the early 1970s.
"GLF did not seek equal rights within a flawed, unjust status quo. It campaigned for the transformation of society to end straight supremacism and stood in solidarity with all other oppressed communities.
"This same agenda of radical social transformation is needed now as the UK faces the quadruple whammy of Covid-19, economic meltdown, endemic racism and climate destruction."
Today marks the first ever Global Pride Day, with virtual events planned all over the world to make up for the cancellation of traditional parades due to Covid-19.
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With the worldwide crisis having a devastating impact on Pride organisations, Global Pride provides an opportunity for the LGBTQ+ community around the world to come together and celebrate diversity and equality during these challenging times.
Featured Image Credit: PA