This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual Boston Pride Flag Raising, hosted by Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the City of Boston, is being held as a virtual event, as all of Boston Pride’s public events were postponed until 2021. The virtual event will take place at 12 p.m. today, Friday, June 5th and can be viewed on the City of Boston’s website www.boston.gov and on Boston Pride’s Facebook and Youtube pages.
The virtual Pride Flag raising will feature remarks from Mayor Walsh, Governor Charlie Baker, Representative Elizabeth Malia, Boston Pride board member Malcolm Carey and transgender activist Athena Vaughn. The National Anthem will be performed by Davron Monroe.
Boston Pride worked extensively with the City of Boston to produce a virtual flag raising to signal to the community that June marks Pride Month. The virtual flag raising was produced and pre-recorded and in commemoration of Boston Pride’s 50th anniversary, Boston Pride had chosen to raise the original Gilbert Baker Pride flag which was first flown in San Francisco in 1978 and consists of eight symbolic colors that reflect the strength and resilience of the LGBTQ+ community.
Standing with our Black and Brown brothers and sisters and as we reflect on the current turmoil unfolding across our country, Boston Pride with the full support of Mayor Walsh will be raising the Unity flag that includes two additional black and brown stripes as well as the colors of the Trans flag at City Hall Plaza today. Over the next year, Boston Pride, in partnership with the City of Boston and the LGBTQ+ community at large, will host listening sessions and will pursue creating a unique Pride Flag to be flown for Boston Pride 2021 and beyond.
“As we confront a global pandemic and the painful reality of racial injustice, we need to support one another, and work together to create the change we want to see,” said Mayor Walsh. “I’m proud to stand firm with Boston’s Black and Brown LGBTQ+ community, celebrate the entire LGBTQ+ community’s incredible legacy, and recommit ourselves to racial justice and progress during this crucial moment in our city’s history.”
“We invite everyone to participate in discussions surrounding the design for the new Boston Pride flag. We encourage community participation so that all are represented,” said Linda J. DeMarco, Boston Pride President.
2020 marks the 50th anniversary of Boston Pride and the first Pride event in Boston was held one year after the New York City Stonewall Riots, which erupted in June 1969 in response to persistent harassment and violence perpetrated by members of the police. Fifty years later, the violence against Black and Brown communities, especially Black Trans women, undeniably highlights ongoing structural systems of oppression and racism, reminding us that our work is far from done. We will continue to fight for social justice and equal rights for all LGBTQ+ people.