The bluish hue of the Mendenhall Glacier served Saturday as a backdrop for rainbow-clad people.
With most Pride month events canceled in light of the ongoing pandemic, PFLAG Juneau and Juneau Suicide Prevention Coalition held a brief meet up and photo op near the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center to celebrate Pride.
“I wanted to at least get a group photo,” said Jenny Smith, co-chair of PFLAG Juneau.
PFLAG was known until 2014 as Parents, Families and Friends of Lesbians and Gays, and the organization has over 400 chapters across the country. Juneau Suicide Prevention Coalition training and outreach coordinator Jan Reece distributed pamphlets that list resources for promoting connecting and wellness within Juneau’s LGBTQ+ community.
About a dozen people gathered for about a half four to hold signs and flags near the visitor center for the event that was also a show of solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.
One sign stated “Black Transgender Lives Matter” and listed the names of Dominique Rem’mie Fells, Riah Milton, Titi Gulley, Nikki Kuhnhausen, Ashanti Carmon, Claire Legato, Tamika Washington and Denali Berries Stuckey.
In 2o2o, 16 transgender or gender nonconforming people have been killed by violent means, according to the Human Rights Campaign.
While signs noted deaths and recent setbacks for the LGBTQ+ community, including the Trump administration’s reversal on transgender health protections, Smith said there is also a lot to celebrate.
That includes the Supreme Court of the United States’ decision earlier this month that affirmed people cannot be fired on the basis of their sexual orientation and gender expression, Smith said.
“This is a celebration of Pride, a celebration of the Supreme Court decision,” Smith said. “A celebration of gains we made.”
• Contact Ben Hohenstatt at (907)308-4895 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @BenHohenstatt