Louisville’s Mayor, Metro Council representatives, Louisville Tourism, Civitas, the newly-formed Louisville chapter of the National LGBTQ Chamber of Commerce, the Human Relations Commission and the Fairness Campaign all came together to kick-off Pride Week June 10 – 17 by raising two new flags in front of Metro Hall. These flags, designed and donated by Louisville Tourism, feature a black fleur-di-lis in the middle of the rainbow flag.
“Communities that embrace diversity are strong communities. That’s why we are proud to become the first Kentucky community to officially display an international symbol of inclusivity by raising the Pride flag,” said the Mayor.
“Louisville has always ‘prided’ itself on being a welcoming and inclusive destination, making it our mission to be one of the most LGBTQ-friendly cities in the country,” said Karen Williams, President & CEO of Louisville Tourism. “These flags serve as a public display of support, reinforcing our outreach to the LGBTQ community, which has helped us capture major accolades including the current cover story in Passport Magazine and the recent designation by Instinct Magazine for Kentuckiana Pride as one of the 12 Fabulous Worldwide Events Taking Place During Pride Season.”
Additionally, Metro Council President David James announced that the City Hall Clock Tower will be lit in support of Louisville’s LGBTQ residents.
Mayor Fischer is encouraging all businesses and residents to show their colors and participate in this year’s Pride Parade, which is anticipated to be the biggest Pride Parade int he city yet, with more than 100 entries and 5,000 walkers.
The annual Pride parade starts 7 p.m. Friday, June 14 at Market and Campbell streets and proceeds to the Big Four Lawn, where the Big Four Bridge will be lit in rainbow colors at dusk and the annual pride festival is being held.
“We’re excited Louisville continues to take a lead in embracing inclusion, diversity, and our LGBTQ community,” said Chris Hartman, Director of the Fairness Campaign. “Twenty years after Louisville banned LGBTQ discrimination with its historic Fairness Ordinance, the raising of Pride flags at Metro Hall signals to everyone who visits our city that it is open to all.”
Louisville’s Points of Pride include:
• A perfect score of 100 in the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s Municipal Equality Index four years in a row (2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018)
• Home to the 11th largest LGBTQ population in the United States
• University of Louisville is one of only 17 schools in the nation to earn five stars in the Campus Pride Index, the only public university in the South ranked among the “Best of the Best”
• University of Louisville Medical School has piloted the first medical student training for targeted LGBTQ healthcare needs and is the first university in the country to offer a LGBTQ Studies minor
• Louisville Metro Government extends benefits options to domestic partners of employees and was one of the first cities in the South to do so
Louisville recent LGBTQ accolades:
• Six Surprising Cities Great for LGBTQ Families, Family Traveller
• Six Underrated Cities for LGBT Travelers, Conde Nast Traveler
• Nine Perfect Places for Your LGBT Destination Wedding, Travel + Leisure
• 10 Hottest Gay Destinations, Orbitz
• America’s 10 Gayest Cities, Gallup Poll
• Seven U.S. Pride Festivals off the Beaten Track that Will Blow You Away, GayStarNews
• 12 Fabulous Worldwide Events Taking Place During Pride Season, Instinct