Interview: Cynthia Cheung on 2018’s Hong Kong Pride Parade
Hong Kong Pride celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. We speak to one of the organisers to learn what’s in store
By Time Out Hong Kong|
From humble beginnings, the Hong Kong Pride Parade turns 10 years old this autumn. This year’s event, on November 17, goes from Victoria Park to Edinburgh Place, taking over the streets of Hong Kong to advocate for greater diversity in society. The parade’s spokesperson, Cynthia Cheung, talks to Alice Huang about the highlights of this year’s event. The theme of last year’s parade was ‘Turn the Tide, Walk with Pride, Discrimination Says Goodbye.’ What’s the theme for 2018? This year it’s ‘Call for the Law, Equality for All’. Last year we received some criticism that ‘discrimination’ was too general a term and didn’t properly express anything, so this time we wanted to have a particular emphasis. We’ve been striving for a Social Orientation Antidiscrimination Law but we still haven’t heard anything from the government.
What do you hope such a law would achieve? For example, no one should be discriminated against in the workplace. If I’m going to a job interview, you shouldn’t just decide, “You’re homosexual, so I don’t want to hire you.” There are also instances, in the US, of gay couples going to restaurants and not being offered service or wedding cakes. No one should suffer discrimination for their sexual orientation.
What’s special about this year’s event? This year is our 10th Pride Parade and we want to focus on community network development. We’ll be co-operating with more LGBT groups and hopefully other big LGBT events. We also want to put more emphasis on volunteer networking. We get hundreds of volunteers every year and we really want to develop the bonding between them.
How has Pride grown over the last 10 years? The number of participants has continually risen, from 1,000 in 2008 to 10,000 last year. It’s not only the LGBT community that comes to the events, but also non-LGBT people who support the same issues, support their friends and family, and support love.
Apart from the Social Orientation Discrimination Law, what else is Pride trying to achieve? Our highlight issue this year is all-gender facilities because there is a very limited number of those. That creates difficulties for transgender and third-sex people when it comes to using public toilets and changing rooms because they don’t want to choose or be stared at or have people get angry. We want to raise awareness of this issue to help more people acknowledge it, understand it and support it.