“That’s why we need Pride 50 years on and that’s why Pride continues to be a protest”


Yesterday (30 June), as Pride month drew to an end, Hannah Bardell SNP MP delivered a speech in Parliament where she acknowledged how far we have come over the decades, but how as we mark 50 years of Pride in the UK, it’s important to not repeat history.

Bardell acknowledged some of the incredible LGBTQI women and allies who have supported her over the years. She went on to say: “I also want to recognise some of my dear friends, ‘a wedge of lesbians’ you could call them.”

“Sisters, who know who they are and women who’ve blazed a trail in all aspects of life and worked so hard in their many fields to further LGBTQ equality. Including our chief lesbian, Linda Riley, who has helped me personally so much since I came out and does incredible work through DIVA magazine and through her tireless charitable work.”

Hannah also continued to acknowledge Jacquie Lawrence, who was recently awarded the Iris Prize Fellowship, for her work in increasing onscreen lesbian visibility.

“I of course have my own family, who I am very grateful, who love and accept me. I’m proud that my fiancée Emma and I are able to be open, live our lives freely and be accepted by our families. There are many both home and abroad who are not able to that. And that’s why we need Pride 50 years on and that’s why Pride continues to be a protest.”

Bardell continued to praise local prides but acknowledged that some will not be able to go out and publicly celebrate. Both in the UK and around the world. She frequently asserts that whilst we’ve come a long way, Pride still is and should be a protest.

“Whilst in the UK we have the right to love who want to, marry or be in a civil partnership with them, have a family, there are still gaps in those rights and still huge prejudice. And as we stand and sit here today, our trans and non-binary siblings are being subjected to a grotesque attack on their rights just to exist. To access healthcare, to participate in sport and wider society, and to be fairly represented in an increasingly hostile media. So I want to put on record right here and right now, that I stand with my trans and non-binary siblings and will fight for them as they have fought for my rights against a tide of misinformation, the like of which we saw, as many members have said, in the 70s and 80s, before and since, against lesbians and gay men.”

Bardell acknowledges and praises the embedding of LGBTQI inclusive education into curriculum in Scotland.

“Inclusive education, despite the efforts of many, does not mean we are indoctrinating or brainwashing children. Quite the opposite. We are just simply explaining to them that families come in all shapes and sizes and they are all beautiful.”

As her speech nears to an end, Bardell reasserts: “Just as we look back at the appalling way that we treated lesbian, gay and bisexual people in decades gone by, let’s not repeat history.” Hannah acknowledges Jake and Hannah Graf and the visibility they have provided as trans parents and how they give hope to so many.

DIVA magazine celebrates 28 years in print in 2022. If you like what we do, then get behind LGBTQI media and keep us going for another generation. Your support is invaluable. 


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