June is Pride Month, and while there is no parade this summer, there is still so much to do. Latoyia Edwards spoke to Boston Pride President Linda DeMarco about all the events on the horizon. Here is their conversation:
Latoyia: Today, we’re here with a special guest, Linda DeMarco, President of Boston Pride. Linda, ,welcome!
Linda: Thank you so much. Nice to see you again, Latoyia.
Latoyia: Nice to see you too. So, Linda, June of course, as we all hopefully know, is Pride Month. But the world is still not quite back to normal because of COVID. So that means no Parade this June.
Linda: Yes, yes. You know, even though the Governor and the Mayor have lifted some restrictions…our parade is really large, and it takes a while for us to get that organized. So unfortunately, I know a lot of people are going to be disappointed, but we are going to do virtual events, but no parade this June.
Latoyia: So, what events can we expect this June, whether virtual or in-person?
Linda: The illumination is for businesses and public buildings around the city to illuminate in rainbow colors, rainbow flags, so we have that throughout the month of June.
And then we will be having our flag raising on City Hall Plaza with... mayor [Janey.] The Mayor will be hosting that on June 4th.
June 7th NBC will be working with us on a political forum for the Mayor’s candidates, concentrating on LGBT issues.
Pride Lights is coming up [in] Blackstone Park. [We’re] working with the neighborhood association to light up the park in pink in recognition of people who are not only living with AIDS but people who have passed away with AIDS.
The 12th, which would normally have been our Parade, we’re leaving that empty and hoping that people will come and support the Trans Resistance March, which is going to be a march and a vigil at Franklin Park.
Latoyia: Wow. You still have a full schedule planned… I do want to ask you specifically about Express Your Pride a little bit more. Tell us how folks can express their pride.
Linda: Well, it’s so difficult because everyone expresses themselves during the parade and the festival, so we want to give them an opportunity to do it.
So we’re having them send in videos or photos to our website that has them either decorating their house, decorating themselves, singing, dancing, artwork, dressing up their pets. Anything they do to express their Pride throughout the month of June.
Latoyia: Linda, last year Pride happened shortly after the murder of George Floyd, which set off really a racial reckoning. Many people, many organizations are moving toward diversity, equity, and inclusion. Let’s talk about what is Pride doing this year to encourage those efforts in the organization and the community.
Linda: So, we’ve been taking a year now, working with a diversity consulting firm, to bring on new leadership on the board… We created a transformation advisory council… who will be picking new board members and new leadership to come on that will have a focus on transgender, queer, Black, Latino, indigenous folks within our community on our board, and have new leadership so we can move forward.
Latoyia: Well that’s absolutely exciting. Where should people go to learn more about Boston Pride?
Linda: Well we have our website, www.BostonPride.org , and you have opportunities for people to join the board and you have community councils. [People can also] go to Express Your Pride [and] look at the calendar.
Latoyia: We appreciate all you do in the community. Thank you for being here today.
Linda: Oh, you’re welcome, thank you, thank you, and thank NBC for supporting Boston Pride.
Latoyia: Absolutely. Our NBC10 Boston, NECN, Telemundo New England, [and] NBC Sports Boston [family] are proud media partners of Boston Pride.