Monday, 20 Jun 2022  |  Reading time:  7 mins  | Read online

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Pride: representation during June and beyond

Last week, we put the spotlight on local government's responsibility to serve LGBTQIA+ communities, through Pride, representation and more.

Pride Month commemorates the ongoing struggle for civil rights and equality faced by people who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer/questioning (LGBTQ), while also celebrating progress and achievements by people in this community. Most countries celebrate Pride Month in June to honour the 1969 Stonewall uprising in New York, USA, although some celebrate in other months.

Municipalities can visibly welcome, support and celebrate their LGBTQIA+ communities during Pride Month through social media posts, lighting up civic structures in rainbow colours, and flying the Rainbow, Transgender Pride or Progress Pride Flag on public buildings – and partnering with private businesses where this is not possible.

Local government also has a crucial responsibility to develop policy and services that meaningfully support LGBTQIA+ people all year round, created and implemented through ongoing engagement.

Local government can act internally and externally, benefitting from being the closest government level. Internal actions can include supporting a diverse and inclusive workplace, creating equal employment opportunities and non-discrimination policy, and engaging with campaigns for better LGBTQIA+ representation.

We shared a fantastic new interview with Carl Austin-Behan, LGBTQ+ Adviser to the Mayor of Greater Manchester, UK, plus innovation from leading cities globally and helpful resources and policy examples.

Note: The LGBTQIA+ acronym includes intersex and asexual groups, plus other gender identities and sexual orientations not specifically covered, including two-spirit (2S) people. Preferred acronyms vary between global jurisdictions, as reflected in examples featured in this edition.

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This week's featured content

Permanent visibility equals permanent acceptance: An interview with LGBTQ+ Adviser Carl Austin-Behan OBE DL
By Freya Millard and Melissa Thorne, LGIU

Carl Austin-Behan was the youngest and first openly gay Lord Mayor of Manchester, UK, from 2016 to 2017. Since 2018, he has served as the LGBTQ+ Adviser to Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham.

Carl spoke to LGIU’s Freya Millard about how his background motivated him to advocate for LGBTQ+ rights, his advice for organising effective community-led Pride events, and his strategies for making LGBTQ+ issues visible in local government all year round.


LGIU Global Local Highlights

Featured briefings:

🔒 Supporting the LGBTIQA+ community
Originally published to mark International Day Against LGBTQIA+ Discrimination. Click here to read this briefing.

🔒 How can councils support the LGBT+ community? The experience in Northern Ireland. Click here to read this briefing.

Innovation & Inspiration

Curated case studies and news from around the globe

AUSTRALIA: Sydney council visibly supports LGBTQIA+ community
The City of Sydney is home to more LGBTQIA+ people than any other Australian council area. Recent council commitments include: providing nearly $300,000 in seed funding for the proposed Qtopia Sydney Queer Museum, a 90-metre rainbow path and ‘Equality Green’ section of Prince Alfred Park to celebrate marriage equality, and a proposed framework to recognise and protect the Oxford Street precinct’s LGBTQIA+ social and cultural history in future development. Sydney will host the international LGBTQIA+ festival WorldPride in 2023, marking the Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade’s 45th anniversary and 50 years since the first Australian Gay Pride Week.
Time Out / City of Sydney / Star Observer / Australian Pride Network

We shared more inspiring examples from:

Bangkok, Thailand where a Pride parade returned for the first time in 16 years amid wider equality advances.

Berlin, Germany where LGBTI support has been tailored specifically for refugee communities.

Barcelona, Spain and its innovative centre supporting LGBTI community across a range of services from employment and health to culture and the arts.

Policy & Resources

Cities working together: The Rainbow Cities Network brings together more than 40 global cities that take an active role in combatting discrimination against LGBTI people, sharing initiatives and activities to increase the impact of local actions. Each year, network members share a best practice one-pager. 2021 examples included an intersex visibility campaign in Hanover, Germany, and a citizenship initiative empowering trans people in São Paulo, Brazil.

In the subscription only Global Local we also highlighted research from the Center for American Progress on practical action from local government, supporting older members of these communities from Australia and policy examples from Vancouver and the Yukon in Canada and Brighton and Hove in the UK.

Thanks for reading!

Next week, we’ll be exploring freshwater management, by looking at local government initiatives and responsibilities to ensure reliable access to safe water around the globe. To access our archive and full resources subscribe today.

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If you would like to share your story, you can fill in this simple form or drop me a line at Please forward this free newsletter to a colleague or share it on social media to help us reach even more people who value local government globally. We tweet from @GlobalLocalLGIU.

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