We are protesting the disgraceful decision by the board of Dublin Pride to bar LGBTQ advocacy and community groups from speaking after the Pride Parade on Saturday. As members and allies of the communities that the board presumes to speak for, we urge you to reverse this decision. In this year, the 20th anniversary of Decriminalisation, the board would do well to remember that Pride would not exist without the work and commitment of those activist and grassroots groups and movements who have fought and continue to fight on behalf of our communities. Dublin Pride parade is an event that brings LGBTQ people together from across this country, and that demonstrates to us and to the wider society that, despite our differences, we are a community and that we stand together. The post-parade speeches are a brief but crucial space where the history and ongoing struggles that many of us face are spoken, and for many people a life-line to the sense of being part of a community, of not being alone in their own struggle. We still face daily discrimination and homophobic violence. Rights that heterosexual society takes for granted are still withheld from us because of who we love. We are still denied the right to legal recognition of the gender that we know ourselves to be. There must be time, amidst the celebration and the partying, for these crucial truths to be heard and remembered. Excluding the activist voices and groups who work tirelessly on our behalf is a betrayal of what Pride itself should stand for. If you are serious about Pride becoming nothing more than another corporate-sponsored festival, as members of the community you say you represent, we ask you to change this decision and reinstate the post-parade speeches.
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