Resolution Would Declare June as “Pride in the City” Month

City Council President Pro-Tempore Eva Magnuszewski (D-AL), Council Majority Leader Carlo Carlozzi, Jr. (D-5) and Council Minority Leader Robert Smedley (R-4) have introduced a resolution to, “declare the month of June as, ‘Pride in the City’ month,” and declare that, “LGBTQ rights are human rights.”

The resolution declares that, “members of this Council support the rights, freedoms, and equality of those who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ),” recognizing that, “individuals of this city who are LGBTQ have made and continue to make, vital contributions to every aspect of our city, including in the fields of education, law, health, science, business, research, economic development, architecture, fashion, sport, technology, music, civil rights, politics.”

The legislation resolves that the City Council,

1) Recognizes the LGBTQ rights are human rights and are protected by the Constitution;

2) Recognizes that all residents should be treated fairly and equally regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity;

3) Encourages residents to join the celebration of LGBTQ Pride Month to provide a continuing opportunity for all persons to learn about the discrimination and inequality that has faced;

4) Agrees that the City of New Britain must strive to ensure that promise of equality is realized for all.

In the resolution, the Council would declare, “the month of June as, ‘Pride in the City’ month and encourage all residents to come out and attend the various events which have been organized by ‘New Britain Pride’.”

New Britain Pride has been planning several events in June in celebration of Pride in the City month.

The resolution commemorates that, “modern history of the LGBTQ community started with individuals who took a stand for human rights and dignity at the Stonewall Inn in New York City on June 28, 1969.”

The historic event is the reason why June is celebrated as Pride Month. As GLAAD says,

The majority of Pride events are held in June to commemorate the anniversary of the Stonewall Rebellion in New York City on June 28, 1969, which most historians consider to be the birth of the modern LGBT movement. At the time, police raids on bars catering to LGBT patrons were common, but that night, the patrons of the Stonewall Inn fought back. While historical accounts of the night vary, the violent response ignited a national firestorm of activism that brought new visibility to the struggle for LGBT equality.

The LGBTQ movement has been gaining momentum ever since.

The resolution points out that, “in 1974, Elaine Noble became the first openly LGBTQ candidate elected to a State legislature in the United States when she won a seat in the Massachusetts House of Representatives.”

It goes on to honor that, “on January 8, 1978, Harvey Milk made national news when he was sworn in as an openly gay member of the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.”

The resolution notes several key advances in legal rights for LGBTQ Americans.

It notes the landmark 1982 Wisconsin legislation that was the first state law in the nation to ban discrimination in employment and housing based on sexual orientation.

The resolution says that, “in 2000, Vermont became the first State in the country to legally recognize civil unions between same-sex couples.” Civil unions were a stepping stone in history toward full marriage equality for couples of the same gender. The Vermont legislature approved its civil unions law after having been ordered by its state Supreme Court to grant same gender couples the same rights as marriage provides. In 2005, Connecticut became the first state in the nation to approve a civil union law without having been ordered to do so by the courts, making it the second civil unions law in the nation.

The resolution honors the landmark decision when, “on June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States in Obergefell v. Hodges decided by a vote of 5-4 that the 14th Amendment requires all States to license marriages between same-sex couples and to recognize all marriages that were lawfully performed out-of-state.”

While noting that, “these decisive moments in history are the story of the LGBTQ community and have put our nation on a positive track to achieving full equality,” the resolution recognizes that, “LGBTQ individuals serve and have served in our local police department, state national guard and all branches of the United States Military with honor, distinction and bravery.”

The resolution is on the agenda of the May 23, 2018 City Council meeting.