Boston Pride Community Demands Board Step Down (In Solidarity with Boston QTPOC)

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Boston Pride’s volunteer workforce and a growing number of community leaders of color,  community organizations, and LGBTQ+ community members demand that current Board members of Boston Pride step down.  

For decades, community activists have called out the Boston Pride Board for its persistent failure to proactively address issues of racism and white privilege, and failure to center on the lives and voices of Black People, Indigenous People, and People of Color. Black and Latinx Pride have been continuously underfunded and neglected. In 2015, Black Lives Matter held a protest at the beginning of the Boston Pride Parade to voice their demands. Those demands have remained largely ignored. 

After the deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, and Tony McDade, the Boston Pride workers and volunteers prepared a statement in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, condemning racist police violence. The Board deleted “#BlackLivesMatter,” rewrote a condemnation of police brutality into a “bad apple” narrative, and then posted the whitewashed statement at midnight without consulting anyone. The letter was immediately met with a firestorm of backlash from the Boston LGBTQ+ community.

On June 16, outraged by the incessant systemic racism in Boston Pride, the volunteer workforce of Pride presented a statement demanding that members of the current Pride Board step down. The statement included a proposed transition plan that would help ensure continuity and stability during the transition to a more diverse board who will turn their focus on the lives of Queer and Trans, Black People, Indigenous People, and People of Color.  

On June 18, the Boston Pride Board posted a statement promising to transform.  It was immediately met with another firestorm of backlash. The Pride Board no longer holds the trust of the LGBTQ+ community that Boston Pride is supposed to serve. 

We demand a change in leadership and governance structure as a means to usher in transformation in response to, and in solidarity with, a multitude of community voices that have been demanding transformation for years.  As volunteers committed to the LGBTQ+ community and Boston Pride, we have an ethical obligation to respond to community demands while at the same executing a transition that preserves the well being of Pride.  The time for change has come!

Please sign the petition affirming that it is time for a new, diverse board.