Global Pride, the 24-hour virtual Pride taking place this weekend, will shine a light on LGBTQIA+ community members from every continent. Organisers say it has the potential to be the largest LGBTQIA+ event ever.
Over 500 Pride and LGBTQIA+ community organisations contributed more than 1,500 films to the Global Pride project, which launched on 1 April with less than three months to plan, organise and deliver the event.
Organisers have already announced a number of world politicians including former US Vice President Joe Biden, Canadian PM Justin Trudeau, and Austrian President Alexander van der Bellen. The broadcast includes many more political leaders including the only openly transgender MP in Europe Vladimir Luxuria, Mayor of New York Bill de Blasio, and Argentinian government legislator Vilma Ibarra.
The event will also amplify black voices, in acknowledgement of the international response to the deaths of George Floyd, Tony McCabe and others that has prompted a historic demand for racial justice by working with founders of the Black Lives Matter movement. All prior releases can be found at www.globalpride2020.org/news.
In addition, a map with start times in global time zones can now be found at www.globalpride2020.org/watch/.
A complete list of participants will be posted prior to 27 June but here are several additions that represent just some of the extraordinary diversity that viewers will see as part of Global Pride:
Sophia Jimémez, a singer and drag queen from Mexico who has performed with stars of Ru Paul’s Drag Race and was a finalist in La Más Draga 2, a television talent show of drag queens.
Denise Ho is a Hong Kong-based Cantopop singer and actress, as well as a pro-democracy and Hong Kong human rights activist. Ho has been blacklisted by the Chinese government for her active participation in the 2014 Umbrella Movement in Hong Kong.
Ahmed Alaa was jailed in Egypt after raising a rainbow flag at a concert in Cairo 2017 and in the Global Pride broadcast gives a moving tribute to Sarah Hegazi, a lesbian activist jailed with him but who took her own life earlier this month. She had suffered post-traumatic stress disorder following torture whilst in prison.
Also from Africa, Ahmed Umar is a sculptor from Sudan who talks about the fight for LGBTI+ equality in his country where homosexuality can still attract the death penalty.
Contributions come from a number of other countries where LGBTQIA+ people face severe social and legal restrictions, including Iraq, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Syria, Iran, Palestine, Libya, Tunisia, Morocco and Jamaica. More than 20 Prides in India will feature, alongside Trans Pride Pakistan and Nemat Sadat from Afghanistan.
Almost all countries in Asia are included, as well as more than 40 contributions from Africa. The show will also feature a surprising contribution from Antarctica.
“I remember the first conversation we had about this project, and how so many people thought it would be an impossible task to deliver, especially in less than three months,” said Steve Taylor of European Pride Organisers Association.
“But yet again the grit and determination of the LGBTQIA+ community has ensured we will have an historic, ground-breaking show that will bring our community together in these trying times. Global Pride is our time to shine, our time to show the enormous and beautiful diversity of LGBTQIA+ people in every corner of the world.”
A team of more than 50 volunteer curators, editors and producers have spent hours reviewing, preparing and editing the content ready for the YouTube and Facebook broadcast on Saturday [27 June].
They are part of a larger volunteer team, drawn mainly from Pride organisations around the world, led by European Pride Organisers Association and InterPride. A relief fund has been established and donations to Global Pride will go towards supporting Prides affected by COVID19, to ensure they can survive this year.
“Global Pride is a vision. It is our movement’s response to the COVID-19 crisis. It began with a few people and grew into this unbelievable event that includes over 500 LGBTQIA+ led organisations from over 80 countries,” said J Andrew Baker of InterPride.
“Nearly 40 partners have supported us to make that vision reality. Even during an economic crisis, companies and their LGBTQIA+ employees have provided much-needed resources. Businesses around the world have a place in the fight for LGBTQIA+ equality and human rights protection, and each partner that has supported Global Pride is helping us to ensure the visibility of our community and to shout out for inclusion and the end of discrimination.”
Google and YouTube are the presenting partners of Global Pride. Additional support has been given through partnerships with Queerty, Q.Digital, LGBTQ Nation, Facebook, Gilead Sciences, iHeart Radio, Time Out Group, We Are Social, DIVA Media Group, AARP, George Michael, and Pride Basics.