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

Second annual Delta Pride Picnic to highlight LGBTQ+ inclusion

This year’s event is slated for Saturday, Aug. 31 at Memorial Park in Ladner

Young South Surrey soccer player follows dream to England

Hugo Patel Thompson, 13, hopes to one day play for Chelsea

TONIGHT: Team Canada’s road to the Olympic Games kicks off in South Surrey

Team Canada will play Cuba at 7:30 p.m., Softball City

Securing Olympic spot the latest test for Canadian softball squad at Surrey tournament

Softball hasn’t been included in the Games since 2008 when Canada finished fourth in Beijing

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

B.C. VIEWS: Pipelines set to roll as federal politicians posture

Projects to drive B.C., Canadian economy in years ahead

B.C. Lions fall to 1-9 after 13-10 loss to Ticats

Lowly Leos have dropped six straight CFL contests

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. man who died after rescuing swimmer was known for helping others

Shaun Nugent described as a dad, a coach, a hero and ‘stand-up guy’ at celebration of life

B.C. RCMP plane chases fleeing helicopter as part of major cross-border drug bust

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Border crossings across Lower Mainland seeing lengthy delays

Sumas, Peace Arch and Surrey-Blaine border crossings seeing long wait times

Thousands cycle to conquer cancer

The 11th annual Ride to Conquer Cancer took place Saturday morning, Aug. 24 in Surrey, B.C.

Most Read