A letter from Indy Pride Board Member Eve Keller on her recent participation as a delegate at the InterPride Annual General Meeting & World Conference.
This is a virtual conference with over two weeks of speakers and workshops that Eve attended in late September and early October of 2020.
The InterPride Annual General Meeting (AGM) & World Conference was an excellent use of my time. Oslo Pride had planned to hold this event in person in Oslo, Norway. Many participants lamented the lack of connection that an in-person event would have afforded us. However, Oslo Pride’s fabulous hospitality and quality workshop selections were evident throughout this virtual conference.
Throughout the conference, some common themes were obvious: Anti-racism, Trans rights and visibility at Pride events, and our LGBTQIA+ Elders. Other notable workshops included InterPride restructuring, World Pride in Sydney, accessibility needs, and volunteer empowerment. San Diego Pride provided helpful information, worksheets, and best practices for volunteer organization, training, and engagement. None of the caucuses were recorded, however the goal of meeting multiple times centered around how to speak (write up) their specific community needs and present them to InterPride in a way that would effect change. I particularly enjoyed the discussions in the Small Prides Caucus as well as the Bisexual Caucus.
The Small Prides Caucus focused on if and how Prides shifted to online or virtual celebrations and events. One of the great ideas included a Pride in a Box drive-thru pick-up service by Kitsap Pride (Washington State). The outside of the box read “When it rains, look for Rainbows.” When you opened the box, there was a giant rainbow and lots of Pride swag. Many others mentioned shifting towards a focus on BIPOC events, leaders, and marches as it relates to Black Lives Matter initiatives.
The Bisexual Caucus discussed the use and visibility of Bi+ specifically at Pride events. Therefore, those identities that do not fall neatly in any category or may be from completely unlabeled to pansexual and everything in between. They were very excited to hear about Indy Pride’s Bi/Pan Night and asked several questions about the event, attendance, and reception from attendees. The main take away included having a space for Bi+ in Pride events and allowing them to be directly involved in decisions for these events.
I participated in the plenaries as well as their rehearsals given my presenting duties as Governance Co-Chair. I also volunteered on the Vetting Subcommittee under Governance to validate the candidates before and during plenaries as nominations were taken from the floor. An average of 150 participants attended the plenaries each time.
I was delighted to attend the conference and meet other Pride professionals around the world. I was glad to bring details of our Indy Pride 2020 experience to this group, and took even more away from hearing their stories and suggestions from around the globe.