Trade unions accuse Pride in London of letting corporates ‘dominate’ parade

PinkNews logo surrounded by illustrated images including a rainbow, unicorn, PN sign and pride flag.

An open letter sent to Pride in London organisers have urged them to stop giving “pride of place” at the event to corporate sponsors.

Signatories on the ltter include Jeremy Corbyn MP, Green Party leader Natalie Bennett and children’s author Alan Gibbons, as well as a a number of activist and trade union leaders.

The letter, published on the Guardian, says Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners (LGSM), the subject of the 2014 film Pride, were bumped from the front of the parade, in order to give the space to corporate sponsors.

“This domination of the corporations at Pride must be questioned, and the success of the film Pride should have provided the perfect springboard for that,” they wrote.

“We are determined to challenge the portrayal of Pride as a showcase for multinational companies. Among the companies currently sponsoring Pride are those who must be held responsible for the financial crisis, don’t pay their taxes and don’t allow unions to organise.”

They go on to say LGSM will be heading up the union bloc of the parade, in the middle of the order, and that they urge supporters to turn up “in large numbers”.

“Thirty years ago we had to take on the union-busters and supporters of clause 28 under Margaret Thatcher. Today David Cameron has made clear his intention to shackle the unions and ramp up austerity measures that will hit LGBT people hard. It’s time to reclaim the true spirit of Pride,” they concluded.

Pride in London has been contacted by PinkNews/

The full list of signatories is available below

Michael Dance NUT LGBT advisory committee
Jeremy Corbyn MP
Mark Serwotka General secretary, PCS
Natalie Bennett Leader, Green party
Benali Hamdache Unite member and equalities spokesperson for the Green party
Mick Cash General secretary, RMT
Len McCluskey General secretary, Unite the Union
Ian Hodson President, BFAWU
Philippa Harvey NUT national president
Paul Kenny General secretary, GMB
Mary Turner President, GMB
Mike Jackson, Nicola Field, Gethin Roberts, Jonathon Blake, Keran James, Jeff Cole, Mark Findlay, Ray Goodspeed Lesbians and Gays Support the Miners
Brenda Proctor North Staffs Miners Wives
Rosa Kincaid on behalf of sixth form students from Pontefract who have raised £1,500 to travel to Pride to march with LGSM having been inspired by the film
Alan Gibbons Children’s author
Annette Pryce NUT national LGBT executive member
Siobhan Endean Unite the Union national officer for equalities
Fran Cowling NUS LGBT officer
Daniel Suziki LGBT Youth Pembrokeshire
Jeremy Douglas Chair, Unite the Union National LGBT committee and NEC member
Geoff Dexter Co-organiser of trade union bloc, Birmingham Pride
Debs Gwynn NW NUT LGBT rep