Black actors and singers to headline livestream for global gay pride

Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to take part in virtual event – Image: Wikipedia

Black actors, writers, and musicians, including US singer-songwriter, Todrick Hall, and actress, Laverne Cox, will take part in a 24-hour online celebration of LGBT+ pride attended by world leaders, organisers announced on Saturday.

LGBT+ campaigners will work with founders of the Black Lives Matter movement, to demand racial justice, at the event on June 27, which was organised after the coronavirus pandemic forced the cancellation of hundreds of pride events around the world.

“Our (LGBT+) community knows well that we must confront hate and prejudice head-on,” co-chair of the Global Pride organising committee, Natalie Thompson, said in a statement.

“We have been watching an epidemic of violence against trans people of [colour] – mostly women – in the past decade, and this larger discussion must be inclusive and all encompassing. All Black Lives Matter.”

The announcement marked the latest attempt by LGBT+ advocates to highlight the struggles of black Americans, amid global protests over police brutality and racism.

Planned appearances in the virtual event include former US Vice-President Joe Biden, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, artists Adam Lambert and Kesha, and drag performers Pabllo Vittar and Courtney Act.

Manvendra Singh Gohil, the first openly gay prince of India, is also expected to deliver taped remarks.

The worldwide protests were triggered by the May 25 death of George Floyd, a black man who died in Minneapolis policy custody, after a white police officer knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes.

More than 500 pride organisations from around the world will contribute content for the event, a livestream on YouTube.

Some countries have begun lifting lockdown measures, meaning some people may be able to watch the online celebration with friends or at bars.

Organisers are calling on viewers to follow local officials’ health guidelines.

-Matthew Lavietes – Thomson Reuters Foundation

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