So it begins! Happy World Pride, Sydney!
Tonight was a very special start to what promises to be a glitter-filled celebration of love, diversity and inclusivity.
I am so proud to have launched WorldPride tonight at Town Hall, raising the Progress Pride flag above Sydney.
I was also delighted to award the Key to the City to LGBTIQA+ heroes and advocates who have fought tirelessly for equality and inclusion in our city for the past 50 years or more.
It was a wonderful way to start Sydney WorldPride 2023
– a Festival that would not be possible without their struggle and activism.
From the early pioneers of CAMP who led the way for gay liberation in Sydney in the 1970s, the 78ers who were out of the bars and into the streets, to the activists who fought for the decriminalisation of homosexuality, to the trailblazers who led the charge for marriage equality, these individuals have made an indelible mark on our city and on our society.
Their courage, resilience, and determination have transformed Sydney into a more accepting and inclusive place for all. They have helped to make our city a beacon of hope and progress, not just for the LGBTIQA+ community, but for all those who believe in equality and justice.
As we celebrate the 45th annual Sydney Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras this year, and of course Sydney WorldPride, we honour the legacy of these heroes and advocates, and we thank them for their extraordinary contributions to our city and to our world.
The Key to the City is the highest honour we can bestow upon an individual or organisation, and it was my privilege to present it to Robyn Kennedy, a 78er with a long history of Pride activism.
QTopia Sydney have agreed to be the custodian of the key and to display it in their newly opened interim museum in Green Park, with the view to move permanently into the former Darlinghurst Police Station – a fitting location.
Congratulations to all our LGBTQIA+ heroes and advocates. Your bravery, your passion, and your unwavering commitment to justice will continue to inspire and uplift us all.