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Celebrating Pride Month


Stonewall monument, NYC

What does June mean to you?  Pimm's at Wimbledon, the summer solstice, holidays, cherry season?  For me, June is the month of Pride. I remember attending my first London Pride in June 1987 and I am lucky enough to have been several times since.  The concept of Pride month started in the days, months and years following the Stonewall riots of 1969 and earlier this year I was able to visit the National Stonewall Monument on a family trip to NYC where George Segal’s striking sculpture has stood since its dedication in 1992.


One of the remarkable changes that has happened during my adult lifetime is the change in attitudes towards the LGBTQ+ community and few things signify this change more than Pride.  My first experience of Pride celebrations back in 1987 involved me nervously attending the London march with two of my now dearest friends.  At the time I would not have shared with my family that I was marching, and it was certainly not something to discuss within most workplaces.  As a young adult, LGBTQ+ support was not popular, prejudice was rife and companies risked negative financial impact for demonstrating positive attitudes.


Pride flag
Photo by Alexander Grey

It is extraordinary to think it was as recently as 2017 that Volvo made an ad featuring for the briefest of moments a gay couple and this was seen as a high risk move; which would be felt more, the boycotting of Volvo by those who disapproved or the ‘pink pound’?  Today the situation is entirely different with companies as diverse as Apple and Tesco pledging their support.  Once upon a time it was commercial suicide to demonstrate support for the rainbow flag, now many would suggest it is financially prudent to display the rainbow flag on social media handles, in shop windows and more.  I and those that I love, are delighted by the progress in society and value the celebration of a more diverse community,  but I cannot help but wonder whether all the companies redesigning their logo this month to incorporate the rainbow flag are actually committed to LGBTQ+ rights or whether, instead there is an element of rainbow washing taking place.


Catrina Young, Leicestershire Celebrant

I am confident that those who know me best will vouch for my genuine support of any and all relationships which are founded on informed consent and mutual respect.  I really do believe that ‘love is love’ and am proud of having stood by that motto throughout my teaching career although there is no doubt it is a far less controversial stance to take these days than when I began working in schools, with Clause 28 still in place.  You can find more detail on my website.


As an independent celebrant, I am delighted to work with my clients to create, write and deliver a ceremony that is exactly right for them.  I am committed to ‘discrimination free’ celebrancy  and relish the opportunity to work with individuals, couples and families to create ceremonies that truly reflect their values and beliefs. For more information, please visit my website. I am conscious that the freedoms enjoyed in the UK are not universal, were won at a cost and deserve to be defended to the hilt.  I am proud to support Pride month.


By Catrina Young, Leicestershire Heart-led celebrant, Marking Life’s Moments.

© Hardingstone Ceremonies, June 2024.



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2 Comments


Guest
Jun 14

I'm definitely in tune with your outlook Catrina. I suspect that there's an awful lot of strategic rainbow washing going on.

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Guest
Jun 14
Replying to

I love seeing all the rainbows during June but hope that companies stay loyal to their promotions year round.

Catrina Young

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