"Last year the First Minister became the first serving Prime or First Minister in the UK to address a pride event; this year she will become the first to march."
For the first time in Pride Glasgow's history, the First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon MSP, will be named honorary Grand Marshal of Glasgow Pride. The First Minister will lead the parade through the streets of Glasgow, along with 200 LGBTI young people from across Scotland.
Pride Glasgow cite the First Minister's longstanding support for LGBTI equality as the reason behind their decision: "The First Minister is a staunch supporter of LGBTI equality. As Health Secretary she led on the initial development of equal marriage in Scotland and she has since said that the day equal marriage passed in the Parliament was one the proudest moments of her time as an MSP. As First Minister she has pledged to ensure trans equality by reforming Scotland’s outdated Gender Recognition Act to bring it up to international best practice. Last year the First Minister became the first serving Prime or First Minister in the UK to address a pride event; this year she will become the first to march."
Pride Glasgow is Scotland's largest lesbian, gay, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) pride event, with over 8,000 people expected to take part in a march through the city centre from Clyde Place to Kelvingrove Park. Over 50,000 spectators are also expected to attend.
As well as floats and walking groups, the march will include Europe's largest trans flag in support of transgender rights.
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said: “I’m proud that Scotland is considered to be one of the most progressive countries in Europe regarding LGBTI equality and Pride Glasgow is a fantastic event that brings communities together and celebrates all that LGBTI people bring to Scottish life. As a society we must champion equality and fairness at all times and defend the progress that has been made. I am pleased to be named as the first ever honorary Grand Marshal of Pride Glasgow and I look forward to joining young LGBTI people in the parade to mark Scotland’s Year of Young People.”
Suki Wan MSYP, Chair of the Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP), said: “It’s an honour to have been asked to accompany the First Minister to open this year’s Pride Glasgow.
“Everyone in Scotland should feel safe and happy; safe to be who they are, and to love who they love. We know that isn’t the case for everyone, despite enormous steps which have been taken in recent years. That is why Pride is so important. It allows us to celebrate our differences, while uniting us in our commonalities.”
The parade takes place on Saturday 14 July from 11.30am, with assembly from 10.30am. The parade will start at Clyde Place, making its way through King George V Bridge, Oswald Street, Argyle Street, Queen Street, St Vincent Place, St Vincent Street, Argyle Street, Radnor Street and arriving at Kelvin Way.