UK: Pride in London head condemns transphobic parade hijack

Pride in London was overshadowed on Saturday when a group of transphobic, lesbian protesters hijacked the front of the parade, and and led much of the march – in front of London Mayor Sadiq Khan and equalities minister Penny Mordaunt.

That this group – carrying a banner that read “transactivists erase lesbians” and handing out transphobic leaflets – weren’t removed from the march has outraged many in the LGBT+ community.

Stonewall’s CEO Ruth Hunt hit out at Pride in London, saying organisers had “a duty to act and protect trans people.”

The mayor of London, meanwhile, criticised the protesters, with a spokesperson for Khan’s office telling PinkNews that “transphobia is never acceptable.”

On social media, cisgender lesbians shared messages of solidarity and support for trans women, using the hashtag #LwiththeT – to contradict the anti-trans group’s use of #GetTheLOut.

In a statement on Sunday, Pride in London condemned the “vile” actions of the group, saying: “We are sorry.” However, organisers were criticised for initially releasing a statement citing “hot weather” and “safety” behind the decision to let the protest group to lead the parade. 

As the dust settles on the controversial episode that clouded Saturday’s parade, Pride in London co-chair Alison Camps spoke to PinkNews about her and the Pride board’s reaction to the parade hijack, why the protesters weren’t removed and what steps organisers have taken to ensure this never happens again.

You’ve condemned the actions of this anti-trans group of lesbian protesters on Twitter. As a lesbian yourself, why were these transphobic protesters in the wrong?

Camps: The protesters were bigots, who brought disgrace on themselves. They hijacked the front of the parade, stood and stamped on the rainbow flag and yelled in our faces divisive messages about lesbian erasure and removing the ‘L’ from ‘LGBT’. Read the full interview with PinkNews