L with the T leading Pride in London | Photo: CJD/Pride In London
Pro-trans lesbians were the first to march at Pride in London today (6 July).
A group of eight women marred last year’s celebrations with a transphobic protest. They claimed that ‘trans activism erases lesbians’ and sent a letter to Stonewall, asking to remove the ‘L’ from ‘LGBT’.
But, this year, pro-trans lesbians marched proudly in front to show everyone is equal at Pride.
Others immediately followed, like G with the T (pro-trans gay men) and Pride with the T.
‘We have to show solidarity with the trans community’
A Pride in London spokesperson told Gay Star News: ‘We have to show solidarity with the trans community.’
Trans people have received widespread criticism from the mainstream media in recent years.
‘Supporting every facet of the community and remaining united is crucial to improving our fight for equal rights,’ says Rachelle Foster, co-founder of the L with the T group.
‘I’m a pansexual cis woman and I’ve experienced homophobia on the street when with female partners, I’ve had people tell me my sexuality isn’t valid, and I’ve been fetishized by strangers and even friends.
‘But in my local queer community, I can’t ignore the intensity of suffering experienced by my trans siblings. It doesn’t mean the prejudice I experience is unimportant.
‘It’s recognizing the bigger picture and the fact that it’s all part of the same fight.’
‘The #LwiththeT message works both ways and although I wish this campaign didn’t have to exist, I’ve never felt more supported by my queer family.’
Last year’s protest
Many at Pride in London 2019 have also shown support to the trans community after last year’s protest.
For example, Little Mix members Jade and Leigh-Anne are marching with Mermaids UK, a trans children’s charity.
Last year, eight women stormed the parade route without accreditation. Five of them laid down on the road in front of the parade and refused to move.
Pride in London organizers were forced to allow them to march in the parade, citing safety and the hot weather. Organizers also condemned the protestors and their message.