An Open Letter from Victorian LGBTIQA+ activists, artists, lawyers, academics, performers and writers

We believe that all LGBTIQA+ people deserve to be safe at our Pride March. While some people can safely interact with police, their presence makes many more people in our communities unsafe.

Policing and police violence are everyday experiences for many people, especially Aboriginal people, Torres Strait Islander people, African Australians, people of colour, migrants, trans and gender diverse people, people living with HIV, sex workers, poor people, people with disabilities, people who use drugs, and people without a home.

According to the ABS General Social Survey, only half of gay, lesbian and bisexual people feel they can trust the police. Further, 3 in 4 respondents to a 2020 survey conducted by the Victorian Pride Lobby believed that Victoria Police should not march in uniform. For trans and gender diverse participants the figure was higher at almost 9 out of 10 people.

Pride March should be led by and for LGBTIQA+ communities. We do not believe that police serve our interests by participating against community wishes. 

All are welcome in a personal capacity, but we call for the decentring of police. Instead, we want to see Pride exist in solidarity with communities worldwide and follow the example of Auckland, Brisbane, NYC, and Toronto Pride. 

We call for Victoria Police to cease participating as an organisation at the Midsumma Pride March.

Joshua Badge, writer and letter organiser

Frank Gafa, unionist and letter organiser 

Tarneen Onus-Williams, WAR organiser

Sally Rugg, activist and author

Paul Kidd, lawyer

Nayuka Gorrie, writer

Nic Holas, HIV activist

Patrick Lenton, writer

Kiki Devine, House of Dévine

Kee’ahn Bindol, musician

Simona Castricum, musician and academic

Amy Fabry-Jenkins, Bulldog Pride President

Caleb Thaiday (Cerulean), Miss First Nation 2021

Kate McCartney, writer and director

Alexander Powers (Female Wizard), DJ

Phil Ferguson (Chiliphilly), artist

Laura Du Vè, photographer

Roz Bellamy, writer and editor

Alistair Baldwin, writer

Roj Amedi, strategist and organiser

Rohan Leppert , Greens councillor

Gemma Cafarella, barrister

Hannah McCann, academic

Nevena Spirovska, community activist

Onyx Slater (Onyx), DJ

Briar Rolfe, cartoonist

Beau Newham, archivist

Geraldin Fela, unionist

Lee Carnie, lawyer

Adam Pulford, Greens councillor

Eliza Sorensen, Assembly Four co-founder

Nadezda Simonovits (Top Hun), House of Dévine

Niveen Hoe (Hiphophoe), DJ

David Mejia-Canales, lawyer 

Emma Whatman, academic

Brady Robards, academic

Patrick Durnan Silva, actor

Simon Graser (Simonetti), DJ

Jesse Mallon (Jesse DM), DJ

Emil Cañita, photographer

Nevo Zisin, writer

Kerry Simple (Simple), academic and drag qween

Sevara Zaric (Stevzar), DJ

Jay Davies, photographer

Keely Windred, performer

Shin (Shinobi), DJ

Ksenija Djordjevic, writer

Hugh Crothers, dripfeed founder

Alex Morris (Bae Marie), performer

Jada, House of Dévine

Carlos (Pepito), House of Dévine

Sophie Forrest, DJ

Jess McGuire, writer

Mark Dos (Nefertiti LaNegra), peformer

Aurelia St Clair, performer

Danielle Binks, author

Dr Yves Rees, academic and writer

Jeanine Hourani, writer

Eman Ezekiel, artist

Max Lawrence, musician

Aliyah Ahmad, media strategist

Regan Lynch (Indiciaa), academic and DJ

Witt Gorrie, abolitionist

Brandy Cochrane, academic

Stevie Valentine, events producer

Christopher Cheers, academic

Patrick Durnan Silva, actor

Ryan Stewart, actor

James Conlan, Greens councillor

Patrick Campbell (Tildaswagton), DJ

Jessica Walton, writer

Dženana Vucic, writer

Kim Ho, actor

Joe Comer, writer

James Petty, academic

Dejan Jotanovic, writer

Ari Tampubolon, artist

Sam McGowan, filmmaker

Jesse Oliver, poet

Chloé Hazelwood, arts worker

Tessa Stevens, arts worker

Brent Allan, researcher

Indra Liusuari, artist 

Sam Wallman, cartoonist

Dawn Lee, performer 

Austin Fabry Jenkins, unionist

Patty Abalos, arts worker

Mark Binette, physiotherapist

D Flowers, performer

Jacky Chen, musician  

Maize Wallin, unionist

Liam Elphick, academic

Hayley Percy, producer

Kati Elizabeth, creative technologist

Gia James, sex worker

Hannah Sycamore, lawyer 

Katie Pearson, DJ

Krissy M8riarchy, musician

Anya Saravanan, lawyer

Kin Francis, producer

Kayzar Bhathawalla, photographer 

Callum McKenzie (Slurmaid), producer

Devina Potter, community advocate

Matt Wade, community volunteer

Amy Kreitals, community advocate

Sophie O’Bryan, community advocate

Aimee Hulbert, unionist

Corey Rabaut, unionist

Lisbeth Latham, unionist

Samantha Floreani, activist 

Sam Elkin, writer

Asher Wolf, activist

Mitch Hibbens, academic 

Leena van Deventer, writer

Jess Ison, academic

Felicity Marlowe, community advocate

Ian Woodford, academic

Creatrix Tiara, producer

Tim Krulic, academic 

Priya Kunjan, academic 

Ethan Hughs, writer 

Walton Wong, writer

July Stewart (Julai), House of Dévine

Carolyn D’Cruz, academic

Tom Backhaus, producer

Hannah Morphy-Walsh, artist

Bayley Turner, performer

Erin Kyan, writer

Alison Evans, writer

Michael Whelan, activist

Elyce Phillips, artist

Lauren Bull, lawyer 

Ben Scott, academic

Dettie Sebastian, artist

Bo Bickmore, writer

Lauren Clair (Nikki Darling), activist

Rebecca Dominguez, Bi Alliance President 

Kelly Gardiner, writer

Kyle KM, artist

Xavier O’Shannessy, performer and producer