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HomeBlogIsrael's Largest LGBTQ Pride Parade Returns To Tel Aviv Next Week

Israel’s Largest LGBTQ Pride Parade Returns To Tel Aviv Next Week

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After a dark and difficult year of the COVID-19 epidemic, glowing arches and vibrant street parties will return to Tel Aviv next week with the city’s re-launch of the city’s iconic Pride Parade, to be held on June 25th.

The parade, which has been held every June since 1998 – except in 2020 – represents the peak of Tel Aviv Pride Month celebrations, And serves as another example of Israel’s return to normal life as the country’s ambitious mass vaccination program continues to halt the spread of the corona virus.

The event will take place for two weeks after residents and visitors to Jerusalem Hold a separate Pride Parade, A conference organized independently by an association and not the municipality.

A man waving a pride flag at the annual Tel Aviv Pride Parade, June 14, 2019. Photo by Angeli Bardia

The slogan for this year’s celebration in Tel Aviv is “a community that creates change.” The goal is to create solidarity in the LGBT community and foster positive change throughout society. Hundreds of thousands of people, Israelis and foreign visitors alike, respond to this call every year and join the Equality Movement. As of June 2019, with over 250,000 people marching, The largest LGBT parade in the Middle East.

“Pride events in Tel Aviv-Yafo are a long-standing tradition, centered on a message of equality, acceptance and human and civil rights,” said Ron Huldai, Mayor of Tel Aviv-Yafo, in a statement. “Tel Aviv-Yafo represents a warm home to all the communities living here and is proud to be a groundbreaking city in its approach to the LGBT community and an international source of inspiration. This year, more than ever, we will celebrate together, march together, and fight together for equality. “

Tel Aviv
The Pride Parade in Tel Aviv against the backdrop of the Mediterranean. Photo by Guy Yahili.

Together, the parade participants set off around noon from Bograshov Beach with party trucks and DJs joining the parade. They will then march south along the beach towards Charles Clore Park where a concert awaits with two stages of performances and the Mediterranean in the background. Municipal authorities will release additional logistical details as the event approaches.

“The importance and significance of being a community was especially highlighted during this unconventional year. When everyone was alone, we tried to be one for the other and everyone for one,” said Ruby Magen, director of the Tel Aviv LGBT community center.

See also: Essay Photo: Tel Aviv hosts more than 250,000 celebrants for Middle East’s largest pride parade

The parade is not the only opportunity for the community to celebrate this coming June. Other events include beach parties at Hilton Beach from June 17-26, the Wigstock Drag Festival on June 22 and the “Subculture” Festival June 16-19 which will also mark a farewell to the current Tel Aviv LGBT community center. many more Provide the backdrop for a month of festive pride and the flourishing of the Tel Aviv LGBT community.

A changing country

It all comes at a unique political moment for Israel and the LGBT community. A new government seized power this week, bringing the more progressive left parties into the coalition for the first time in more than a decade.

Tel Aviv
The Tel Aviv-Yafo City Hall is illuminated with pride colors. Photo by Yossi Keret.

At the same time, the diverse new coalition also includes right-wing parties and the Islamist RAAM party, which said resist All LGBT rights legislation. But Hope remained That the parties will be able to reach an agreement on the promotion of LGBT rights with the regulation of the fragile coalition.

The momentum for such national legislation has grown with other tangible actions in recent years. June 2020 Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality Announced Cohabiting couples, including LGBT people, will be able to register their relationship and enjoy the same rights and services provided to married couples.

Earlier this month, the municipality announced that the first LGBT couples were officially registered as family units in a unified database and would receive equal access to municipal services, including enrolling children in educational institutions in Tel Aviv.

In order to register, partners must be defined as a couple in a law accepted by the National Insurance Institute (Social Security) or present an affidavit proving the joint life signed by a lawyer.

Couples of passion
The first LGBT couples were officially registered as family units this month. Photo by Kfir Sivan.

“I welcome the addition of the registration for couples to the municipal databases. The Tel Aviv-Yafo Municipality recognizes every couple. The registration clarifies this and eases the bureaucracy for couples, “Huldai said in a statement.” I hope that the Israeli government will close the gap soon and move forward into the twenty-first century, by implementing equal rights in matters of personal status. “In particular, progress is needed regarding the LGBT community: the right to marry, equal parenting, protection from hate crimes and abuse in the workplace, and more. The source of this message is from Tel Aviv-Yafo and will spread throughout the country. We will not give up until rationality proves victorious.”

The movement was also built in preparation for a change in the law banning couples of LGBT people for adoption in Israel. Although a court ruled this in 2008 Same-sex couples can adopt, The Knesset law has never changed and is strict Limits Were adopted by LGBT couples. But in December 2020, Key ministers approved Draft bill for this change, and while the right-wing parties of the previous coalition have made its move unlikely, the new coalition built with more progressive partners offers hope that the bill can become law.

Scenes from the Tel Aviv Pride Parade 2019. Photo by Guy Yahili

As the legal momentum builds, events like the Pride Parade become even more important in promoting LGBT rights, both as celebrations and as symbols. “The Pride Parade is our cry for equality and a clear symbol of our demand for a free and democratic state for everyone , A member of the Tel Aviv-Yafo City Council in charge of LGBTQ affairs, who initiated the registration process of unmarried couples. “The LGBT community in Tel Aviv-Yafo has tens of thousands of members and together with tens of thousands more from all over the country “Our struggle – which is a struggle for life. This year the community will return to the streets in large numbers.”

Commenting on the hope of the LGBT community in Israel and the hope of the world’s potential to defeat COVID-19, Arad’s notebook said, “next year, I look forward to joining our friends and partners from around the world.”

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