Auckland Pride Parade - Source: Maria Ligaya http://www.marialigayaphotography.com
3 min read

The 2019 Auckland Pride Parade is still scheduled to occur in February following a hui last night in which a number of ideas were thrown around including having the parade replaced with a “coming-out march” rather than the large-scale parade of years gone by.

It had been reported that the parade had been cancelled at the hui, due to the lack of finances following corporate support drying up after the police were banned from marching in the parade in uniform.

In a statement, released by the Auckland Pride Board today it said, “the Pride Parade’s shape and form will not be like in previous years. With a more community-based funding model, we have the challenge and opportunity to be creative on what the actual proceeding will look like.”

The statement also announced they have created a new role of Festival Coordinator and appointed Joel Walsham into the role, to help the Auckland Pride Board going forward with the execution of the Pride Festival. This will replace the previous role of the Festival Director.

Joel Walsham - New Auckland Pride Festival Coordinator (Instagram)
Joel Walsham – New Auckland Pride Festival Coordinator (Instagram)

“At the Community Hui, participants strongly emphasised that they wanted a Pride that was about visibility, engagement with communities that haven’t always felt represented by the event, as well as celebration,” the statement said.

The board is committed to other events across the festival including the Gala which they will “reinvent” in a way that “represents the community vision for Auckland Pride.”

The only event currently unaffected by any turmoil seems to be the Ending HIV Big Gay Out which will be held on Sunday 12 February 2019 thanks to the New Zealand AIDS Foundation for work on getting this event off the ground.

Speaking to Stuff, Auckland Board Pride member Zakk d’Larté said some people left early from the hui and made factually incorrect statements which have now been reported as fact that the parade was cancelled.

“Last night was an opportunity for us to say our ideas and our thought processes at this point, but then we opened the floor to people’s ideas and someone from the floor suggested if we could make it a coming-out march that we used to have all these years ago,” d’Larté confirmed to Stuff.

“It was a suggestion from the membership and that’s now spiralled to ‘the parade’s cancelled’ and ‘there’s going to a march and a protest’ and we’re like ‘hold up, we have not decided this’.”

Following the hui the Board will meet to elect new members to replace those that have resigned and make decisions on the makeup of this year’s pride festival, a date for this meeting is yet to be decided.

“We have full intention for there to be a celebration. It’s going to be a grassroots-led parade but maybe the shape and form will look different to previous years.”

Next year’s Pride Parade would be “huge, queer, rainbow, beautiful and gayer than ever,” d’Larté said.

This recent hui was held following the Special General Meeting two weeks ago which saw the board survive a no-confidence motion.

The only event currently unaffected by any turmoil seems to be the Ending HIV Big Gay Out which will be held on Sunday 10 February 2019 thanks to the New Zealand AIDS Foundation for work on getting this event off the ground.

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