Embracing Pride: Celebrating Love, Diversity and Equality
Dear Residents, Staff, Family and Friends of Edenwald,
As we begin the month of June, I want to take a moment to recognize and celebrate the diversity and inclusivity that is at the heart of Edenwald. Pride Month is a time where we come together to honor and support our LGBTQ+ colleagues, friends, family and community members. We reflect on the progress that has been made and the transformative changes that we have witnessed, from marriage equality to increased visibility. These achievements are a testament to the efforts of activists, allies and community members who have fought for equality and inclusion.
However, let us not forget that Pride is not only a celebration; we must remember that Pride was born out of resistance and the need to confront prejudice, discrimination and violence.
June 28, 1969: NYPD raided the Stonewall Inn and rioting took place over six days, which was led by a black, transgender, bisexual woman, Marsha P. Johnson. Protestors demanded the establishment of places where LGBT+ people could go and be open about their sexual orientation without fear of arrest. In NY, the presence of someone who was gay was often labeled as “disorderly conduct”.
June 28, 1970: The anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising, thousands of people flooded the streets of Manhattan in the Christopher Street Gay Liberation Day March, regarded as the first Pride event.
June 25, 1978: The first openly gay politician, Harvey Milk, asked a talented designer friend, Gilbert Baker, to design an all-encompassing symbol to take to San Francisco’s Pride March, where the 30’x 60’ flag was unveiled.
November 23, 1978: Sadly, Harvey Milk was assassinated along with Mayor George Moscone in San Francisco.
1999-2000: Bill Clinton was the first U.S. President to officially recognize Pride Month.
June 26, 2015: Same sex marriage becomes legal throughout the United States.
2009-2016: President Barack Obama declared June LGBT Pride Month and becomes the first sitting President to declare support for same-sex marriage.
May 26, 2023: There are currently 491 anti-LGBTQ bills in the U.S. State Legislatures targeting LGBTQ rights, more than double the amount introduced last year. 118 of these bills are anti-trans healthcare, public accommodation bans and education gag orders related to gender identity, sexuality and expression.
As we review this abbreviated timeline from the past to present day, it is a reminder that the fight for justice and equality is far from over. We must continue to advocate for LGBTQ+ rights, fight for equality and support one another in our individual journeys. Every voice matters and experience has taught me, that sometimes, it only takes once voice to inspire change.
To those who may be grappling with your identity, remember that you are not alone. Reach out to trusted friends, family, or support networks who can offer guidance and understanding. At Edenwald, it is important that we create a culture where everyone can express themselves authentically and be embraced with love and respect.
Edenwald is a safe space.
I am proud of the steps we have taken to support our LGBTQ+ staff and residents. Our support of the LGBTQ+ community extends beyond Pride Month; moreover, I want to emphasize that our commitment to fostering an inclusive community goes beyond a single day or month of recognition. It is an ongoing journey that requires us to continuously prioritize diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging in all aspects of Edenwald, ensuring that everyone feels respected and included year-round. We are dedicated to regularly evaluating and improving our policies, practices and initiatives to support and uplift all of our staff and residents.
Together, let us celebrate Pride Month and may today and the days that follow, be filled with love, acceptance and unity.
Staff and Residents, please join us for our Pride Month celebrations!
Baltimore Pride will celebrate June 19-25, 2023
“One Heart, One Love, One Pride”
Chief Information and Equity Officer