June is Pride Month and Hertsmere Borough Council is sending a clear message of support to Hertsmere’s LGBTQ+ community.
The Pride Progress flag was raised outside the Civic Offices in Borehamwood today (Thursday, June 1) by the Mayor of Hertsmere, councillor Chris Myers. He was joined by council staff, councillors and colleagues from the NHS, Hertfordshire Police, Herts Fire and Rescue Service, Communities 1st, and a representative of Herts Pride.
A collection for the Albert Kennedy Trust (AKT) has raised more than £275 so far, with donations continuing over the month. The AKT supports LGBTQ+ young people aged 16-25 in the UK who are facing or experiencing homelessness or living in a hostile environment. It is one of the charities the Mayor has chosen to support during his term.
Mayor Myers said: “Today marks the beginning of a significant month, and one which holds a special place for me. I am proud to say that I am a member of the LGBTQ+ community and that I am the first openly gay Mayor of Hertsmere.
“Pride Month is about acceptance, equality, celebrating the work of LGBTQ+ people and education in LGBTQ+ history. It gives us an opportunity to celebrate who we are and how far we’ve come. But it is also about raising awareness of issues still affecting the LGBTQ+ community.”
Tyson Martin, chair of Herts Pride, said: “Pride Month is about bringing communities together regardless of gender, sexual identity, religion or belief.
“The theme this year is #TogetherAsOne and we want to provide a safe space to come together to celebrate diversity, love, and equality.
“We hope to see lots of people at Cassiobury Park in Watford this August to celebrate Herts Pride!”
This year, the council is offering rainbow laces to local sports teams across the borough. These were purchased from The Pride Shop, and donations from sales support The Pride Fund – raising funds for Pride events across the UK.
Hertsmere Borough Council is offering community grants to voluntary organisations and community groups that celebrate Hertsmere’s diverse communities and promote inclusion across the borough. These groups could qualify for a funding boost of up to £3,000.