Our country’s history is marred by attacks against union members and all working people -- and those attacks continue today. But union people have always stood up and fought back. Still, too many union members in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, Asexual and other sexual and gender minorities (LGBTQIA+) community have been forced to separate the fight for fairness at work from their fight for respect and dignity in their community.
As advocates for fairness and equal treatment, we must be willing to stand up and speak out against any type of injustice, discrimination, and violence wherever it exists and in whatever form it takes.
AFGE celebrates the LGBTQIA+* community especially during Pride Month to applaud the progress that has been made and to bring awareness to the struggles that still exist to reach equality for our union family.
This year we commemorate the 50-year anniversary of the Stonewall riots, which are widely considered the most important event leading to the modern-day fight for LGBTQIA+* rights. As we recall this milestone, the 2019 D.C. Capital Pride theme gives a “shhhOUT” to the past and present, while committing to “Shout Out” ignorance and hate as we move forward together as allies.
Celebrating 50 Years of Pride in the Nation’s Capital
These are challenging times for all working Americans but especially for those of us who have loved ones, friends, and family who can still be fired from their jobs because of who they love, not conforming to gender stereotypes, or other reasons not related to their job.
On June 27, 1969, at the Stonewall Inn in New York’s Greenwich Village, a group of fed up gay men began a riot that started a movement. As we mark the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, we must come together as a union community to stand in solidarity with our LGBTQIA+ union family.
In 2015, AFGE took a huge step in openly supporting our members who are part of the LGBTQIA+ community by becoming a sponsor in the Capital Pride Celebration for the very first time. As folks gathered this year in D.C. for the 44th Annual Pride Celebration in the Nation’s Capital, in AFGE’s 4th year of participation, we were proud to recommit this union as a safe space for all our members regardless of who they love or how they identify.
The Capital Pride Parade attracts over 150,000 spectators every year, many of whom are AFGE members working in the D.C. and federal governments. We had a joyful contingent of AFGE staff, members and officers join us in the parade along with more than 200 contingents-floats, vehicles, and walkers. As part of AFGE's sponsorship, we also have premier placement in the annual festival. Many federal, DC government employees and other union members expressed their appreciation at seeing AFGE during the festivities!
Check out AFGE’s 2019 Pride Celebration Ad:
Check out the pictures from AFGE’s participation in the Capital Pride parade and festival here.