Amherst Mayor David Kogon signed a proclamation on June 6 declaring the week of June 10 to June 16 as Pride Week in the Town of Amherst.
“By proclaiming Pride Week in this community, the town is recognizing that everyone has the right to live in conditions of dignity, respect and peace regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity,” Kogon said after signing the proclamation.
The mayor noted the town has a vibrant lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning community that has worked diligently with its allies to “encourage dialogue as a tool towards an inclusive society that celebrates diversity in the town and surrounding area.”
“The LGBTQ community and its allies have worked hard to make Amherst a safe and positive community for all,” he added.
Emma Brown, chairperson of the Cumberland Pride Committee, noted that June 27 marks the 50th anniversary of the partial decriminalization of homosexuality in Canada.
“While we are proud to acknowledge all that has been done, there is still much work ahead of us to achieve true equality,” Brown said. “We are reminded that just a short 50 years ago homosexuality was still considered a mental illness, and there were little to no protections for members of the LGBTQ2+ community against violence and discrimination.
“Cumberland Pride would like to thank the Town of Amherst for raising the rainbow pride flag once again this year as a show of solidarity, and for their continued support of the LGBTQ2+ community. It is the ongoing support from local communities such as the Town of Amherst that will continue to help us move forward in the fight for acceptance and equality.”
The proclamation heralds a week of celebration throughout Amherst and Cumberland County. Scheduled events include:
“I would encourage all residents to participate in as many of these events as they can,” Kogon said.