What should HCA do for Pride Month? 

Throughout the year HCA likes to celebrate cultural events in the calendar through the activities we do and stories we share. This June it’s Pride Month, a time dedicated to celebrating the LGBTQ+ communities all around the world.

But what should HCA do for Pride Month that’s not just adding to the noise of inauthenticity and brand box-ticking? 

Needing more perspective we were lucky to have a conversation with an HCA volunteer who gave his opinion on some unuseful ideas (hello logo changed to rainbow colours!) but sharing his views on how we should celebrate: 

  1. Give it substance

“Every year countless charities and brands will roll out a token queer rolled out to look good on Instagram. They will do the bare minimum, change their logo to rainbow, and release pride versions of their products. They profit off of a community without helping or even consulting how to do it right. They do nothing to deal with the prejudice that their own queer employees face, they do nothing to help us stay alive. If there is no real substance and change behind your pride month posts then you have failed.”

2. If you don’t have the resources showcase others

“When we don’t have the resources to set up another project in response to Pride, we need to highlight the non-profits and charities that are already doing the work. We need to encourage people to support and make sure that they are seen for the great work they do. I know that it doesn’t sound glitzy and fun, might not look that impressive on Instagram but it will help to make a real difference right now.” 

3. It’s not about finger-pointing to your community to help you celebrate

“I am not doing the hard emotional labour recanting a sad story of some of the things I’ve experienced as a trans person, especially as an unpaid volunteer. We know that the queer life can be a very traumatic one you do not need to know mine.”

4. Remember fear of violence is real for LGBTQ+ groups and individuals year in year out

“When June is over and #pride stops trending, we will still have groups claiming that we are a danger to women when we just really need to pee, we will still see story after story about another murdered black trans woman and I will walk through Holborn as fast as possible with keys in between my knuckles.” 

5. Make space for ideas of the future that represent all groups

“In a perfect world, I would love HCA to run groups supporting LGBT+ people in Holborn, to have a safe place that young queers can gather and meet others like them. A place where older queers can find a community and access the support they need. Somewhere that disabled queers can literally get through the door, in a world where your community only meeting place is nightclubs it leaves so many disabled, neurodiverse and non-drinking people out. Gay cafes are not a thing, where do the quiet gays go?”

6. Trying with intent is better than not trying at all

“Trying to make this perfect pride campaign is impossible but at least we can try, avoid tokenism, and see what we can do to support the community.” 

A big thank you to our volunteer for his time and words given for this news story. 

HCA is trying to be better at how we include, represent, and involve everyone.  We know we’ll have to change how we act as an organisation.  We know some issues are hugely important for some people and that they feel strongly about them.  We know as well that we don’t know it all.  We want to learn from volunteers and others like him to understand your story.  

If you’d like to share a story let us know by emailing eleanor.harrington@holborncommunity.co.uk


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