It’s a fitting start to the festival.
President of Ireland Michael D Higgins has written a letter of support to the organisers of Cork Pride Festival ’23, offering his support and gratitude “to everyone who has tirelessly fought, and continues to fight, for LGBT + rights”.
In the wake of a particularly fraught weekend, which saw Cork City Library closed following an incident of harassment by a small anti-LGBTQ group, The President of Ireland took time out of his busy schedule to applaud the theme of this year’s Pride festival ’30 Years On’, marking the 30th anniversary of the decriminalisation of homosexuality in Irish law.
“In reflecting on those challenging days, let us not forget the countless regions worldwide where individuals identifying as lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender still face the burdens of discriminatory laws and uninformed societal beliefs.” The President wrote.
“Cork has long played an integral role in the campaign for equal rights in Ireland.
“It was in Cork that the establishment of The Quay Co-Op took place, founded in 1982 through a collaborative effort of feminist, lesbian and gay, environmental, and other activists, serving as a hub for the emerging social movements of that era, standing at the forefront of the struggle for equality and diversity at the time.”
“While notable progress has been made here in Ireland, it is crucial that we persist in our efforts to establish a truly equal society, a future that embraces peace, justice, solidarity, and inclusivity.”
— President of Ireland (@PresidentIRL) July 30, 2023
The President said that, in a world often marked by division and inequality, events like Cork LGBT+ Pride Festival “become a beacon of hope and a testament to the power of unity”.
“May I express my sincere gratitude to all those who have tirelessly fought and continue to fight, for LGBT+ rights, ensuring that every individual can live authentically and without fear of judgment or discrimination, making a more fulfilling, harmonious, just, and inclusive society.”
Cork LGBT+ Pride Festival runs in venues all over Cork from now until August 6th, 2023. See the line-up here.