Thanks to Brighton MP Caroline Lucas from the Green Party for her help on the day. For background you can read my statement along with links to other statements here.
Caroline Lucas says,
“Just before the Brighton Pride parade set off, a number of people who were marching under the Queers Against Cuts banner were prevented from taking up their pre-assigned place in the parade, and instead were forced to the back of the march, with suggestions that they might be made to leave the parade altogether. I immediately took this up with police and Pride officials, and along with Peter Tatchell, ensured that at least they could remain on the march.
I didn’t see the police kettle myself, since by then I was on the Green Party float, but I am deeply concerned to hear that this happened, and am taking it up with police and organisers. Pride should be a place where all who uphold LGBT rights are welcome, and where as well as celebrating what the LGBT community has achieved, we also focus on the threats and risks that remain to be challenged. The brutal financial cuts being meted out by this government are already undermining services for LGBT people and others, and a peaceful demonstration against the cuts seems entirely appropriate as part of Pride. It’s a terrible shame that an otherwise wonderful day for Pride was spoiled in this way “.