Just Stop Oil threatens Pride in London disruption over airline sponsorship

Two Just Stop Oil protesters hold a large orange banner with the organisation's name

Just Stop Oil activists have published a list of demands of Pride in London ahead of possible disruption this weekend.

The climate action group, which on Wednesday (28 June) briefly stopped play at the Ashes, has turned its sights on Pride in London over its sponsorship deals.

Tweeting its demands on Thursday (29 June), the group said that if they were not met, “we may or may not take action at this weekend’s events”. 

Just Stop Oil’s demands included Pride in London being open about who its sponsors are, making a statement demanding an end to new oil and gas, and setting up a meeting to discuss joining in the civil resistance against climate change.

While the published letter has redacted its addressee and doesn’t name Pride in London specifically, Just Stop Oil linked to an article about Pride in London’s sponsorship deal with United Airlines.

“The climate crisis is the biggest threat to LGBT+ rights, due to societal collapse,” the letter read. 

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Pride in London is due to take place on Saturday (1 July).

Just Stop Oil’s threat to disrupt Pride has been both welcomed and criticised, with some claiming that as anti-LGBTQ+ laws and hate crimes are rising, an un-disturbed event is more important than the demonstrations.

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Some backed the disruption, however, agreeing that climate change is the biggest threat to the LGBTQ+ community.

Writer Jeffrey Ingold explained: “There is a story in The Guardian today about how London may flood due to rising sea levels soon if urgent work isn’t carried out on the Thames Barriers. There can’t be Pride if London is under water. 

“What is the point of queer liberation if we don’t have a liveable planet?”

Just Stop Oil activists have previously urged the LGBTQ+ community to get involved with climate change direct action, with one member claiming, “it’s a powerful expression of our queerness to take direct action”.

Oliver Clegg, 19, explained: “Whenever there’s been injustice, there’s always been queer people that have been at the front, fighting it. I feel like it’s in our bones as queer people to see injustice and to stand up to it.”

Though the 24-hour period Just Stop Oil gave Pride to respond has now elapsed, the climate action group has not yet confirmed whether or not they will be demonstrating at Pride.

This week, Just Stop Oil activists ran on to the Ashes pitch and began spreading orange powder. Three people have been charged with aggravated trespass.

Activists with the group also targeted a energy firm, Total Energies, on Tuesday (27 June), covering its headquarters in orange spray paint.

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A spokesperson for Pride in London said: “The safety of others is paramount to Pride in London. This year we are highlighting trans+ joy, ensuring that the community knows that with us, they #NeverMarchAlone.

“We call on all individuals, groups and organisations to give this space the respect and focus it deserves in an increasingly hostile and unsafe world.

“We welcome dialogue with Just Stop Oil after the event and wish everyone a safe and happy Pride.” 

PinkNews has contacted Just Stop Oil for comment. 

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