Hundreds of supporters gathered Saturday for the 2nd Steinbach Pride March For Equality. While the size of the crowd was smaller than last years massive event, organizers were pleased with the turnout.
Named as the new chair of Steinbach Pride at the event in KR Barkman park Chris Plett addressed local fears of a less than family friendly event, “It is all about respecting the community. The community would not respect those kinds of action from people. We are telling people again, we respect the city, that is why we are here. We are here to reach out and love people.”
The event got underway at around 11 a.m. With speeches and presentations from allies and activists of the 2STLGBQ* (Two-spirited, Transgender, Lesbian, Gay, Bi-sexual, Queer) community.
Gay Boese from Steinbach Neighbours For Community took the stage before the march began. She says the second annual Pride March For Equality demonstrates a step forward in understanding and acceptance in the Southeast, but it doesn't stop here.
"There is much more work to be done to create a safe hospitable place, a place of justice, a place of love and equality for all. Our dream would be that sexual orientation becomes a non-issue"
Plett spoke to the crowd encouraging them to keep sight of the goals of Steinbach Pride. He notes those goals include making Steinbach and the Southeast a safe and tolerant place, for every single 2STLGBQ* person with no exceptions. He adds it is important to create a dialogue about these issues in a way that is open and loving.
"We are going to build bridges, we are going to build connections, a line of contact and communication, that way the wall of fear and hate that has been built up in the past will never every be built up again."
Those gathered, took to Main Street for the second annual Steinbach Pride March for Equality just before 12 Saturday afternoon.