Officials slammed after deciding Pride Month ‘isn’t worth talking about’
A US town council blocked a Pride Month proclamation, leaving members of the community shocked.
The council members of Lovettsville, Virginia denied the motion to introduce a small proclamation to the first agenda meeting in June.
Introduced by council member Renee Edmonston on May 26, the motion was met with silence from other council members, which prompted its removal.
“The motion will die without having a second,” council member Christopher Hornbaker said in the meeting to audible gasps and groans from community members.
“That proclamation would have taken them five minutes to read,” planning commissioner Kris Consaul said, according to WUSA9. “They decided that it wasn’t worth doing and the signal they send is that we are not worth listening to.”
She proposed a similar Pride Month proclamation last year after LGBTQ+ flags were slashed and stolen. It also failed that year, too.
Several council members issued comments at the end of the meeting, expressing their disappointment that the council feels “that the LGBTQ+ community isn’t even worth talking about”.
After the rejection, resident Caitlin Keefe thanked Edmonston for her involvement in the proclamation and condemned other lawmakers for not seconding the motion.
“On May 15, I sent an email to all town council members asking for concerns and involvement in this – no response,” Keefe said, per WUSA9. “I have never been so disappointed, and so dismayed at people that are my neighbours. And may I remind you, you represent all of the town, not just the ones that are on your same level with your values or your beliefs.”
Other residents stood up to say their piece on the matter, with one resident speaking about a local transgender teen who took their own life a few years ago.
“Research constantly finds that LGBTQ+ young people report lower rates of attempting suicide when they have access to affirming spaces,” resident Cheryl Frye said.
“Why isn’t our town one of them? Having at least one accepting adult can reduce the risk of suicide attempts among our young people by 40 per cent.”