The New York City Pride parade organizers are banning participation from the New York Police Department from their June parade and any related events. The ban will remain in effect until 2025 when Heritage of Pride reviews whether or not it should remain in effect.
The ban applies to all correction and law enforcement exhibitors. CNN reports that the organizers cite the need to create a safe space for LGBTQIA+ and BIPOC groups. LGBT stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer/questioning, intersex, and asexual groups, and BIPOC stands for Black, Indigenous, and people of color.
“The sense of safety that law enforcement is meant to provide can instead be threatening, and at times dangerous, to those in our community who are most often targeted with excessive force and/or without reason,” Heritage of Pride said in a statement. “NYC Pride is unwilling to contribute in any way to creating an atmosphere of fear or harm for members of the community.”
This year, event organizers will use private security, volunteers, and community leaders for security measures. NYPD‘s first response will be used only as necessary. According to the NYPD, they will still be there in person for traffic safety and to keep order.
“Our annual work to ensure a safe, enjoyable Pride season has been increasingly embraced by its participants. The idea of officers being excluded is disheartening and runs counter to our shared values of inclusion and tolerance,” Detective Denise Moroney, a spokesperson for the NYPD, said in a statement. “That said, we’ll still be there to ensure traffic safety and good order during this huge, complex event.”
This year’s parade theme is “The Fight Continues.” Last year’s in-person parade was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic and was instead held virtually. Last year marked the 50th anniversary of the event.
NYPD Deputy Commissioner John Miller responded to the ban on Twitter stating, “@NYCPride’s decision to exclude members of the NYPD from Pride events is hurtful and disappointing. As this scene reminds us, inclusion and dialogue are the oxygen of reform — everything @GOALny stands for as they relentlessly challenge and make us a better department.”
.@NYCPride’s decision to exclude members of the NYPD from Pride events is hurtful and disappointing. As this scene reminds us, inclusion and dialogue are the oxygen of reform — everything @GOALny stands for as they relentlessly challenge and make us a better department. pic.twitter.com/odLP9FO4U0
— Deputy Commissioner John Miller (@NYPDDCPI) May 16, 2021