glifaa Statement on LGBTQI+ Pride Month 2022

June 1, 2022

53 years ago, the June 28, 1969, uprising at New York City’s Stonewall Inn ignited the modern Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, and Intersex (LGBTQI+) civil rights movement.  One year later, LGBTQI+ New Yorkers bravely commemorated the uprising by hosting the Christopher Street Liberation Day March — the first Pride parade.  Within two years, LGBTQI+ rights groups in major cities sparked a global liberation movement — a call to action that continues to inspire people around the world to live up to the promise of equality, liberty, and justice for all.

A leaflet advertising the first Pride march read, “it is our hope that the day will come when homosexuals will be an integral part of society — being treated as human beings.  But this will not come overnight.  It can only be the result of a long hard struggle against bigotry, prejudice, persecution, exploitation — even genocide.”  For more than 50 years, and often at extreme personal risk, the LGBTQI+ community has united amid this struggle during June to celebrate our diversity, declare our worth, and demand equal justice under law.  For 30 years, glifaa members have joined in this fight to combat discriminatory practices within U.S. government foreign affairs agencies and advance the human rights of LGBTQI+ persons worldwide.

As we continue our work to overcome barriers preventing the U.S. diplomatic corps from reflecting the full diversity of the American people, we remember the important lessons our community learned in June 1969 and 1970.  From the very beginning, the LGBTQI+ liberation movement was made possible only because we united in celebration of our diversity.  Marsha P. Johnson, Sylvia Rivera, and other pioneering transgender activists were at the vanguard of this movement, along with many lesbian women, gay men, bisexual people, and intersex and queer individuals of all identities, orientations, backgrounds, and economic statuses.  Additionally, as much as Pride is a celebration, it is also a moment for every member of our community to publicly stand in solidarity — shattering the stranglehold of secrecy and shame — and to fight back proudly and bravely in the ongoing struggle against intolerance, discrimination, and injustice.

Today marks the beginning of LGBTQI+ Pride Month 2022.  This year, with the rights of LGBTQI+ individuals under relentless attack (as President Biden noted in this year’s LGBTQI+ Pride Month Proclamation), we must recommit ourselves to intersectional advocacy to protect the most marginalized members of our community while refusing to cede the hard-fought gains we have achieved.  The glifaa board reaffirms our enduring commitment to advancing human rights for every person, everywhere – regardless of who they are or whom they love.

U.S. Ambassador to Lithuania and former glifaa president Robert S. Gilchrist raises the Intersex-Inclusive Pride Progress flag over the Chief of Mission Residence in Vilnius​ on June 1, 2022.

U.S. Government Statements of Support for Pride Month 2022

President Biden’s Proclamation on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, And Intersex Pride Month 2022

Secretary of State Blinken’s Statement Commemorating Pride Month 2022