London, 3 July 2022 – Over one million packed London on Saturday and they were not from LGBTQ+ community only, but from the whole society. Public and private sector, political parties (excluded the far-right Tories obviously) local governments, well known multinationals, associations, universities, trust, societies, art music and theater companies, part of the armed forces and the iconic Royal Grenadiers. A collective celebration half a century from that 1st July 1972 when 2000 people marched along with the Gay Liberation Front from Regent Street to Trafalgar Square to affirm their rights,
The Pride number 50 has been different from last decades ones. This last wasn’t a huge open party and rally where the wide LGBTQ+ community celebrates the right to openly state their sexual orientation and being respected and not discriminated for this and at the same time needs to reaffirm this right and take the fight for rights forward.
This time all LGBTQ+ employees and communities rallied under one standard design placard bearing the name of the company or association showing that the level of respect of non-discrimination law, fairness and inclusiveness of a company is also proved by the extent of representation of its lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer employees: there’s an achieved balance of power in this. The organised society, the world of work marched through London: a great message of inclusiveness, of democracy in times when it’s most needed.
To name just a few: the National Health Service, Astrazeneca, Pfizer, the football club Arsenal, the Basketball association along with many other sport clubs, many universities such as UCL, LSE, plus the local governments: all 32 boroughs of London, for a total of 30,000 from over 400 community groups celebrating the victory over marginalisation, bigotry, discrimination and biases.
The vast majority of the LGBTQ+ community lives in London felt as an open minded and wide city, but ONS 2020 data show in the capital there’s still a percentage of people not wanting to openly declare their sexual orientation: 374,000 people over a total of 7,174,000 of people aged 16 years old and over surveyed in London, equal to 5.2% of respondents, answered ‘Don’t know or refused to say’ when asked about it.
In comparison in East Midlands, the region of cities like Bedford, Luton, Peterborough, Norwich, Ipswich, Colchester and Cambridge, same 2020 ONS survey counted 74.000 ‘don’t know/refused’ over a total of 3,846,000 aged 16+ interviewed, equal to 1.9%. Figures are an Office of National Statistic estimate from 2020 More recent data will be available over the next month with upcoming release of Census 2022 data collected in 2021 on population breakdown by sexual orientation .