First-ever Akron Pride Festival scheduled for Saturday

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This past summer, Cleveland’s  population was disheartened by the sudden cancellation of their official Pride Parade. But thankfully, for the first time ever, Akron will be holding a Pride celebration this coming August.

So far, this free celebration is planned to be in Hardesty Park on August 26 from noon to 8 p.m. The main goal for Akron Pride is for it to be used as an educating experience for the Akron community.

According to the Akron Beacon Journal, a more specific focus for this community education is the ongoing issue of LGBTQ homeless teens. The creators of this event also want to use it to address the horrific levels of violence that transgender individuals suffer.

This is incredibly important, because the Akron area was the scene of a tragedy that occurred in February 2015. Bri Golec, a 22-year-old trans woman, was killed by her father in their home after a fight between the two. 

This upcoming Pride celebration can help the community understand the crucial importance of accepting transgender people without any exceptions.

Akron has seen some slight progress towards acceptance of transgender individuals. In October, Akron Public Schools announced their decision to grant a second grade trans girl equal access to the girls’ restroom, instead of forcing her to use the boys’ room. As the nation’s LGBTQ community knows, this was a vital choice to make, considering the political and economic fallout created by North Carolina’s HB2, and the humiliation and health risks caused by denying trans people equal access to restrooms.

The importance of educating communities can’t be forgotten, because the LGBTQ community will have a potentially tough battle to face in the near future. With Donald Trump now seated in the White House, along with individuals such as Vice President Mike Pence, threats to our rights are a real possibility. Local LGBTQ communities must warn others about why they can’t give up the impending fight.

For more information about Akron Pride, you can consult their website.

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