From Carrie West, President of TAMPA PRIDE, Inc
TAMPA PRIDE 2020 rescheduled events are still on the Tampa calendar for May 30th. The Tampa Pride Board have been meeting and talking to area LGBTQ+ leaders, regional pride organizers, international Pride organizers and of course our very own Tampa Mayor Jane Castor and Tampa city officials.
We have been very lucky and blessed by our loyal sponsors. I hear from a wide variety of them daily with words of encouragement and also visions of our community that needs hope. Our community needs hope!
We know COVID-19 has affected everyone. With that, please stay safe and healthy! This beast virus is taking a major toll on our community as it is with the rest of the world. It is an economic devastation, a total separation of our family and friends and an emotional roller coaster. We only hope that the decisions made by the world leaders, our President, Congressional representatives and world health officials are positive and correct.
I want to share what the international InterPride organizations have to say about COVID-19 and about a Worldwide Pride Day event coming up on June 27th.
Please take care, be safe, and Godspeed.
Carrie West and the Tampa Pride Board & Directors
3510 East 8th Ave
Tampa, Florida 33605
Pride celebrations worldwide are being canceled or postponed, but organizers are coming together to ensure that LGBTQ people can still celebrate and support each other in 2020.
San Francisco, Boston, Annapolis, and other major American celebrations have already called off plans for this year, but an international group of Pride organizations is coming together to stage a Global Pride on June 27.
InterPride and the European Pride Organizers Association are working with national organizations in Canada, Germany, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States along with regional networks in southern Africa, Asia, Oceania, and Latin America to bring communities together for the Global Pride event.
The event will livestream online for 24 hours featuring contributions from Pride organizations worldwide, speeches from human rights activists, and musical performances.
Kristine Garina, president of the European Pride Organizers Association and Chair of Baltic Pride in Latvia, said, “The unprecedented challenges of COVID-19 mean that most Prides will not take place as planned in 2020, but we’re determined that this won’t stop us from coming together as a united, strong LGBTQIA+ community to celebrate who we are and what we stand for.”
“Global Pride will show the LGBTQIA+ movement for the very best it can be, showing solidarity at a time when so many of us are mourning and strength when so many of us are feeling isolated and lonely. Above all, we will show our resilience and determination that Pride will be back bigger and stronger than ever before.”
“For millions of people around the globe, Pride is their one opportunity each year to come together and feel a part of a community, to feel loved, connected and to know they aren’t alone,” Garina continued. “It’s essential this year that as Pride organizers, we ensure there is still the opportunity to connect, even if we are connecting from home.”
San Francisco Pride announced this week that 2020’s parade and festival will be canceled, not postponed, due to COVID-19. This year’s celebration, among the country’s largest, was to coincide with the 50th anniversary of the first Pride Parade.
“This was not a decision we arrived at lightly,” San Francisco Pride Executive Director Fred Lopez said in a press release. “Far from it: our staff has been in frequent talks with our board, our production team, our partners at many departments of City Hall, officials at other Pride organizations worldwide — and most of all, our LGBTQ communities.”
“We need community and connection more than ever,” J. Andrew Baker, co-president of Interpride, said. “[Global Pride] gives us an opportunity to both connect and celebrate the LGBTQIA+ community’s resilience in the face of this pandemic and the true spirit of Pride.”
“Pride 2020 represents a milestone for Pride events, with many honoring the 50th anniversary of their first gatherings and marches, such as New York to the first Gandhinagar Pride this year and we would not let that pass without recognition and celebration.”