From left, Building Intake/Zoning Technician Dave Christensen, Mayor Marvin Junkin, CAO David Cribbs, Solicitor Jennifer Stirton, Director of Community Planning Barb Wiens, Councillor Wayne Olson, and Pride Niagara board member Darryl Dyball. DON RICKERS

Mayor Marvin Junkin told the small throng in attendance at last Tuesday’s event that he was proud to raise the Pride flag in recognition of the LGBTQ-plus community in Pelham and Niagara.

“Our communities are stronger when we embrace all of our citizens, and create inclusive environments for each and every one of us to thrive,” Junkin said in a brief statement.

On a similar note, Ward 1 Councillor Wayne Olson told the Voice that he was “inspired by authentic and courageous people, and I appreciate the advocacy work that the Pride community is doing in mental health, equity, and social justice.”

Pride park benches are also in the works, after Town Council elected not to create a rainbow crosswalk in Fonthill. Two weeks ago, St. Catharines became the most recent community in Niagara to install such a crosswalk, following Niagara College and Niagara Falls.

This is the second year that Pelham has had the Pride flag-raising ceremony during Pride Month, which is celebrated annually to recognize lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, non-binary and queer achievements, legal rights, and social acceptance. The flag-raising is an initiative of and paid for by the advocacy group Pride Niagara.