Increased significance for Queen City Pride Festival

This year’s Queen City Pride Festival in Regina has taken on even greater significance in light of the recent shooting tragedy in Orlando, Florida.
The Pride Festival officially started with a flag raising at Regina’s City Hall on June 20.
The University of Regina will have a presence throughout the festival week. A contingent from the university will march in the Queen City Parade, including President Dr. Vianne Timmons, which will be held Saturday, June 25, from noon to 1 p.m.
“I’m proud to once again be a part of the parade and other events that mark the Queen City Pride Festival,” said Dr. Timmons. “The University of Regina has to be a leader in promoting inclusiveness on our campus and in the larger community.”
“By participating in various initiatives such as permanently displaying the pride flag on campus, we are sending a message that we want all of the students, faculty, staff and visitors at the University to feel welcomed and safe.”
To coincide with the festival, the Fifth Parallel Gallery at the Riddell Centre is now featuring the exhibit “Resilience: A Pride Exhibition”. The mixed media art exhibit showcases local Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Allies artists in Regina who also happen to be students, instructors or alumni.
The exhibition promotes the continuous fight toward equality on behalf of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender and Allies community.
The UR Pride Centre has also organized the Summer Solstice Ritual at the Academic Green, which was held June 23. It’s a celebration of the longest day of the year and the beauty of diversity.
“It’s incredibly important to have pride week presence at the U of R,” says Leo Keiser, Director of UR Pride Centre for Sexuality and Gender Diversity. “We have experienced that there are a lot of friends and allies of the UR Pride Centre and it’s great to see such events welcomed here.”
The University of Regina has the UR Pride Centre and provides services and programming for the University of Regina, City of Regina and on request, southern Saskatchewan. Some of the services that UR Pride provides are confidential peer support and referrals, workshops and lectures, youth programming, and publications.
The University celebrates diversity and welcomes peoples of all backgrounds, orientation and identities. Some of the more notable initiatives at the U of R include: In 2013, the University opened 10 gender neutral washrooms.
Last June, the University unveiled the permanent installation of the pride flag. Last fall, the U of R adopted a policy allowing undergraduate applicants to declare preferred gender and/or a preferred name. That means students can self-identify their gender preference and have their preferred name used for all university processes.
Numerous events are planned for the Queen City Pride Festival.

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