June 2023 Pride Newsletter
June 8, 2023
FROM KBFPC’S June 2023 COMMUNITY NEWSLETTER
Last weekend, together with other KBFPC staff and volunteers, I joined the festivities at Soldotna Creek Park to celebrate the beginning of Pride Month. Hundreds of people – adults, teens, kids and their families – came together to connect with each other and honor the vibrant LGBTQIA+ (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual, plus others) community at the first of the Kenai Peninsula’s 2023 Pride events. More than 30 vendors informed, fed, and bedazzled the upbeat crowd alongside the fun entertainment. It was a relief to share a collective moment of joy.
On Monday morning, KBFPC staff returned to work at our campus on Ben Walters Lane to find the Pride flags once adorning the front of the clinic building and shining over the REC Room entrance vandalized. Over the same weekend as the Pride celebration in Soldotna, someone(s) returned multiple times to deface the rainbow flags; a symbol that proclaims our clinic and REC Room spaces are inclusive, respectful, and honor the uniqueness of each community member. The result of the event is not just property damage, but reflects the ongoing discrimination and violence targeting the LGBTQIA+ community, and particularly trans youth, nationwide. This cultural and political aggression includes bans on LGBTQIA+ books, sexual health education, and inclusive healthcare and community spaces. The KBFPC and REC Room flags are a ‘light in the window’ and convey the vital message: you are welcome here.
Homer Police are currently investigating the vandalism. We have replaced the flags. And after multiple threatening incidents since the beginning of 2023, we have instituted additional security measures at KBFPC to protect clients, REC Roomers, staff, and property. Safe and accessible reproductive and sexual health care and education is critical for community wellness, inclusive of all gender and sexual identities.
Call to Action
- If you have information about the vandalism at KBFPC, please contact the Homer Police Department. (907) 235-3150
- Attend a Pride event near you. Seward’s Pride Weekend is June 9-11 and Homer’s upcoming Juneteenth x Homer Pride events are June 15-17. If you are an ally, showing up demonstrates support and respect for our loved ones, neighbors, and the entire vital LGBTQIA+ community. Young people, in particular, need safe adult mentors and role models that demonstrate positive behaviors and respect their experiences, not more violence and bullying.
Claudia Haines, CEO
ALSO INCLUDED IN JUNE’S NEWSLETTER:
- KBFPC & REC Room Outreach at Homer’s Juneteenth x Homer Pride Community Walk and Liberation Celebration 6/17
- Safe Zone Training – inclusive education opportunities
- KBFPC’s sexual health curriculum and other resources
- Summer volunteers needed!
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