Monday. 17.06.2024

In most countries, June is Pride Month and, typically, it is a month full of many festivities and functions to celebrate and support the LGBTQ+ community around the world. In Finland, last year, Pride Week alone had about 90 different activities.

This is an event with a long history in Finland going on since 1975, when “Freedom Day” was established by Seta, Finland’s main LGBT rights organization founded in 1974.

Pride Week is the pentacle of celebrations during this month and it happens after Midsummer, in the last week of June. Before 2006, Pride was only held in Helsinki every even year (2002, 2004 for example) and in every odd year (2001, 2003) it would be held in other major Finnish cities. Since 2006, however, the biggest celebrations are held in Helsinki every year but other cities, like Oulu or Tampere, have their own Pride commemorations.

It is true that Pride month is a time of celebration and parties but it is not only about that. This is an important social event that acknowledges and honors the victims of homophobia and transphobia around the world and promotes discussions on human rights, justice, equality and equity, bringing much needed attention to crucial societal issues.

In 2018, the Pride Parade in Helsinki was one of the biggest public events ever in Finland with a record number of over 100,000 people attending.

Pride and Covid-19

Yet, this year, the world is dealing with Covid-19 and all massive events have had to be rescheduled.

Finland is no different and this time around all Pride activities have either been postponed or cancelled all together. Nonetheless, the organization is working to find other ways for people to still celebrate this month in order to keep the discussion and, at least, part of festivities going.

The Pride Week and Parade have been postponed to week 37: from 7th to 13th of September of 2020 and other activities such as workshops, picnics, parties, debate events and youth meetings or any other group activity, normally held in person, have been put on hold.

There will continue to be individual consultations but they are being organized as online or phone call meetings and these are arranged directly with the people who requested them. As for people that need phone interpretation with their meetings, the Helsinki Pride organizers have warned that some of those might be postponed.

A virtual global event

Every other meeting will also be held online or over the phone and each participant will be contacted individually.

Despite that, Pride Month is still being celebrated because the international Pride organizers will create a Virtual Global Pride event on Saturday, June 27th, and a stream Pride-content for 24 hours, so everyone can join and celebrate anywhere in the world, in safety.

For more updated information and daily calendar activities please go to pride.fi

Pride Month is here but how will celebrations be held in this unusual time?