A large rainbow flag is carried down Robson Street during the Vancouver Pride Parade in Vancouver, B.C., on Sunday, August 2, 2015. For some, it’s best not to refer to the LGBTQ community at all. The acronym, that is.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Vancouver Public Library banned from Pride parade after allowing controversial speaker

Vancouver Public Library allowed Meghan Murphy to book space for an event at the library in January

The Vancouver Public Library has been uninvited from participating in next month’s pride events, marking the second organization to be barred by the Vancouver Pride Society.

The society said in a news release Tuesday that the decision to ban the library from participating comes after library management decided to allow “Meghan Murphy to book space for an event that undermined the dignity of trans women” in January.

Earlier this month, the University of B.C. was banned from marching in the parade after also allowing “transphobic hate speech” by anti-SOGI activist Jenn Smith on its campus. At the time, UBC allowed Smith to speak, citing free speech rights.

LGBTQAI2S+ and employees of both the library and university can still march in the parade under other organizations and respective unions.

READ MORE: UBC banned from marching in Vancouver Pride Parade after allowing ‘transphobic hate speech’

“When we released our decision about UBC, several people told us to keep the politics out of Pride,” said Vancouver Pride Society executive director, Andrea Arnot.

“Pride was born from resistance led by trans women of colour. Pride has always been political.”

The society says it discussed its concerns with the library since Murphy spoke earlier this year, and issued a joint letter written by the Coalition Against Trans Antagonism urging for changes to the library’s rental policy.

In an emailed statement to Black Press Media, the Vancouver Public Library said it is disapointed in the decision by the society.

“As a public institution, VPL is committed to providing a venue where diverse ideas and opinions can be shared and discussed. We feel that it is through exposure to different ideas and opinions that society can make informed choices about their core beliefs,” the statement reads.

“We acknowledge that this value has led to concerns related to our room rental policies and has caused a loss of trust for some in the LGBTQ2+ community.

“We hope to regain that trust as we continue our longstanding commitment to promoting dialogue and raising marginalized voices through our programs and services.”

The library added that the society is asking it to go beyond what is legally allowed by freedom of expression, and hopes to march as an organizatio0n next year.


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

White Rock Renegades ‘04 named national champs

Girls went undefeated at national tournament in Calgary

PHOTOS: Supercars parade to White Rock

More than a dozen cars were on display for the Drive Project

South Surrey woman promotes exercise to help fight Parkinson’s disease

‘This keeps me strong’ says Liz Holroyd Campbell, organizer of the 2019 Parkinson Superwalk

QUIZ: How much do you remember about Woodstock?

Weekend music festival in Bethel, New York, was held 50 years ago

Advocates ‘internationalize’ the fight to free Raif Badawi from Saudi prison

Raif Badawi was arrested on June 17, 2012, and was later sentenced to 1,000 lashes and 10 years in jail for his online criticism of Saudi clerics

Canadian entrepreneurs turning beer byproduct into bread, cookies and profits

Some breweries turn to entrepreneurs looking to turn spent grain into treats for people and their pets

Canada ‘disappointed’ terror suspect’s British citizenship revoked

Jack Letts, who was dubbed “Jihadi Jack” by the U.K. media, has been detained in a Kurdish prison for about two years

Chrystia Freeland condemns violence in Hong Kong, backs right to peaceful assembly

There have been months of protests in the semi-autonomous region

B.C. VIEWS: Log exports and my other errors so far in 2019

Plastic bags, legislature overspending turn out differently

Most Read

l -->