Rainbow crossing supports Cairns Pride Festival

Pictured, left to right, Rhianna Mation, Division 5 Councillor Amy Eden, Dealia Cards, Ben Dawson from Queensland Council for LGBTI Health, and (front) North Queensland Health Promotion Officer for Queensland Council for LGBTI Health Leonoardo da Inci.

A rainbow crossing has been installed on the Esplanade, in front of La Pizza near the Aplin Street intersection, in support of the annual Cairns Pride Festival.

This year, black and ochre bars have been added to the crossing to represent Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander members of the LGBTI+ community.

The crossing has previously been installed on the Esplanade near McDonald’s, but has been relocated this year as a result of works associated with the Esplanade Dining Precinct redevelopment.

Division 5 Councillor Amy Eden said the crossing was likely to be a popular attraction and would create awareness and engagement within the wider community.

“Being the only event of its type in regional Queensland, the Cairns Pride Festival brings together our diverse community in a celebration of our shared tropical lifestyle,” Cr Eden said.

“Everyone loves rainbows, and the crossing is one way that we can show our support for this wonderful event that celebrates equality, our LGBTI+ Sistergirl and Brotherboy communities, and of course, our wonderful city.

“I am confident that the crossing will become a focal point this month, not only for the LGBTI+ communities, but for many residents and visitors, and I expect there will be plenty of selfies taken with it.”

The crossing will be in place for three weeks.

Cr Eden said the festival was an opportunity for the whole community to connect in this time of significant isolation, and also raise awareness of support services offered by the Queensland Council for LGBTI Health.

Formerly the Queensland Aids Council, the Queensland Council for LGBTI Health (QC) is a not-for-profit, community-based organisation that promotes the health and well-being of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, sistergirl and brotherboy Queenslanders.

QC Chief Executive Officer Rebecca Reynolds said the organisation was proud to support the passion and work of the local volunteers who run the Cairns Pride Festival, an event that has been held for 13 years.

“Cairns Pride Festival is the largest continuing celebration of the diversity and inclusion of LGBTI Sistergirl and Brotherboy communities in the tropical far north, and is a safe space for people to celebrate, connect and come together,” Ms Reynolds said.

“The launch of the Rainbow Crossing on the Esplanade is an important and visible act of celebration and affirmation of our communities each year as part of the festival.

“This year, we are particularly proud to have collaborated with community to include additional black and ochre colours in the Rainbow Crossing to celebrate the vibrant and strong Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples who are an important part of our communities.”

The Festival will be opened at 6pm on Friday 16 October, with a COVID-safe Cairns Pride Festival Opening Night and Art Exhibition Launch Event, live streamed on the Tanks Facebook page.

In 2020, the Festival will feature a range of events independently designed and run by Cairns LGBTI Sistergirl and Brotherboy community leaders and groups. Full details for the Cairns Pride Festival events can be found by searching for the Cairns Pride Festival on social media.

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